Hundreds show support for water polo player fighting Stage 4 cancer

By Kristin Giannas, Reporter, kgiannas@clickorlando.com
Published On: Feb 26 2014 10:21:06 PM EST
Updated On: Feb 27 2014 07:47:54 PM EST

Ian Supra, a senior and water polo player at Dr. Phillips High School, was diagnosed with Stage 4 esophageal cancer after Christmas break.

ORLANDO, Fla. -

Ian Supra, a senior and water polo player at Dr. Phillips High School, was diagnosed with Stage 4 esophageal cancer after Christmas break.

At Wednesday night's water polo meet after completing his first round of chemo, Ian got the OK from his doctors to jump in the water and play with his team against their biggest rival -- Winter Park High School.

Ian's mother, Jackie Supra, said his team won 10-9, adding that Ian played in the last two minutes.

"He wants to be here and support his team, he's one of the captains of the team," she said.

The normal $5 admission to the meet was waived and donations will be accepted for SupraStrong, a fund to help Ian's family with his medical costs.

More than $76,000 has already been raised and Ian's friends at school have played a huge part. They've sold hundreds of T-shirts that say "SupraMan Strong," necklaces, wristbands and more.

"The first day that he told me, I went out and sold a thousand wrist bands, in three days, that's another miracle right there," said Mateo Mayorga.

The support is helping Supra keep his head in the game.

"You never know what's going to happen," he said. "You might get a curve ball, but don't let it slow you down, overcome it- just work through it- it's just going to make you stronger in the end ... I'm just ready to beat it."

Hundreds of Dr. Phillips High School students wore their blue "SupraMan Strong" T-shirts to the meet Wednesday night. Many of the guys shaved their heads to support Ian.

"He's a great friend, he's a great person, and he has the spirit to beat this," said Rico Sisinni.

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