Former WSU football player’s cancer returns



Riley Sorenson smiles and gives a thumbs up at St. Joseph Regional Cancer Center after a round of chemotherapy treatment for testicular cancer.

RYAN BLAKE, Evergreen reporter

Former WSU football player Riley Sorenson’s will undergo chemotherapy after his testicular cancer returned.

Sorenson’s girlfriend, Elisabeth Haffner, reported the cancer’s recurrence in a Facebook post Thursday, according to Cougfan.

“It’s hard to find the correct words to express the heartbreak we feel, but we are finding the strength to move forward and conquer yet another beast,” Haffner wrote in her post. “Riley is strong, and we are confident he will overcome this yet again.”

Haffner said a tumor was found during a routine CT scan. The following day, Sorenson’s oncologist called to inform of the cancer’s return.

Sorenson will receive four rounds of chemotherapy over the next three months at St. Joseph Regional Cancer Center in Lewiston. The first round began Monday.

The chemotherapy “went as well as can be expected,” Haffner said. “The focus right now is just getting through the treatment. We’ll figure out the next chapter when we get there.”

To help pay for the treatment, Haffner’s best friend Courteney Fisher started a GoFundMe account Friday. As of Monday, Fisher raised almost $12,000.

Sorenson’s first bout with testicular cancer began in June 2016. His cancer moved into remission following surgery, allowing him to play his entire senior season at WSU, according to The Seattle Times.

His original diagnosis came shortly after the loss of both his parents. In January 2016, his father, Bart, died of a heart attack at 49. In May 2016, his mother, Susan, died at 49 of cancer she had been diagnosed with almost exactly a year before, according to The Seattle Times.

The six-foot-four-inch, 325-pound Sorenson started 33 games at center for the Cougars during his career, which ended in 2017. He will fight cancer with the support of his friends.