Fundraiser helps softball team prepare for Florida trip

Photo courtesy of RCNJ Softball, Instagram

The softball team held their annual Tricky Tray fundraiser on Friday in the Bradley Center’s auxiliary gym to help raise money for their spring training trip to Florida, where they will compete in their first games of the 2018 season.

Family, friends and faculty were in attendance, as they bet on a chance to win various basket items that the players brought to the fundraiser. These prizes included candy, a $50 Stateline Diner gift card, Tupperware, Vera Bradley designer bags and a Google Home device. 

Along with what the players brought, various businesses from the Mahwah area donated prizes to the event. These items included gift cards to Dick’s Sporting Goods, a signed New York Jet’s poster and offers to hotels in the area, including the Sheraton. New to this year’s event was a 50/50 drawing, in which the winner walked away with $440.

“This is always an event I’ve looked forward to since coming to this program,” said Shannon Cox, a senior catcher and the designated MC of the event. “It gives us the chance to see our families and they seem to have a lot of fun betting on items, even if they don’t win.”

The rest of the team shared the same sentiment as Cox, as they understand that all of the aspects of their Florida trip are expensive. Along with the trip, the fundraiser is also used to help pay for the apparel and practice clothes that the team will wear throughout the year.

“We realize how much it costs to go to Florida and everything, so we are really grateful that our family and friends are willing to help us by coming to this event and participating in the other things we do,” said Kendra Decker, a sophomore outfielder.

The softball team is coming off a strong 2017 season that included an NCAA Regional victory and Super Regional appearance. The players noted that the trip to Florida is important to develop team-bonding and get some time outside before returning to New Jersey to take on the rest of the season. 

“It is great to see all these people that support our program come out and win some prizes,” said Olivia Mahon, a junior catcher. “While it’s great to see that support, it’s always fun to see who will win the bragging rights that come from whoever’s table wins the most baskets.”

Along with the Tricky Tray, in the coming weeks the team will be selling apparel, doing lottery calendars for the month of December and hosting an annual youth clinic that runs from January to March. 

The team is excited for the season to finally begin, and it is because of events such as this which allow them to start their season off on the right path in sunny Florida.