ST. LOUIS -- Saint Louis University women’s soccer will hold a special Draft Day celebration for 10-year-old 2018 top recruit Avery Ponzar of Festus, Missouri, on Sunday, Aug. 26, at Chaifetz Arena on the SLU campus. The event will take place at noon in the Green Room, located just outside the arena bowl.


SLU women’s soccer is coordinating Avery’s signing with Boston-headquartered national nonprofit Team IMPACT, whose mission is to improve the quality of life for children facing serious and chronic illnesses through the power of team. Avery is courageously battling an immune deficiency due to a rare genetic mutation.


During the ceremony, Avery will sign a Letter of Intent to become an official member of the Billikens. Saint Louis head women’s soccer coach Katie Shields will offer remarks as SLU players and coaches welcome the incredibly positive and optimistic Avery to the team.


Avery, who will be accompanied by her parents and sister, also will receive an assigned locker and a Billiken soccer jersey. She will be introduced prior to SLU’s 2 p.m. game vs. SIUE at Robert R. Hermann Stadium.


As a team member, Avery will attend Billiken practices, games, team dinners and other events. 


Team IMPACT connects children facing serious or chronic illnesses with college athletic teams, forming lifelong bonds and life-changing outcomes. Since 2011, Team IMPACT has matched more than 1,500 children with more than 500 colleges and universities in 48 states, reaching more than 50,000 participating student-athletes. The child joins the athletic team, and the student-athletes join the child’s support team. Throughout the journey, the child gains strength, camaraderie and support while the student-athletes experience lessons of courage, resiliency and perspective they can’t learn in a classroom.