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The Blue & Gray Press | August 25, 2019

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Club sport spotlight: Softball provides student with opportunity for involvement, team atmosphere

Club sport spotlight: Softball provides student with opportunity for involvement, team atmosphere


This past summer as an incoming freshman, I had a few thoughts about my college ambitions. I was determined to succeed academically, get involved around campus socially and find a way to continue playing softball. Keeping in mind that my academics had to come first, and that I wanted to get involved with multiple organizations on campus, I evaluated my different options for how I could continue softball while still achieving my other goals.

When looking at my choices over the summer, I came across the web page for the club softball team. Wanting to learn more about the team, I sent an email to the club president Maggie McMaken. Not only did she respond to me quickly, but right from the start she was welcoming and willing to answer all my questions.

After talking with her, and meeting more of the team at club carnival, I knew that the club softball team would be the perfect environment for me. It gave me the chance to focus on my academics and still play the sport I love.

 The experiences both on and off the field that I had with my teammates this past semester has me excited for the spring season games and a tournament already on the schedule. I am ready for more enjoyable memories to be made. While we may have to wait until next semester to resume our time together on the field, as a team we are still working together to continue improving the program.

 One way for us to do that is through a Winter Fundraiser called Snowballs for Softball. The fundraiser will be taking place at the University Center from Dec. 5 to Dec. 9. Sophomore English major Alex Riker, and current club president senior Maggie McMaken created the idea for the fundraiser.

“Softball does an annual Spring Candy gram fundraiser, so I got the bases for the idea based on that,” Riker said. “Maggie and I brainstormed on what might be a fun idea to do. I thought of snowballs, she thought of ornaments, so we decided to combine our ideas into one.”

As a team we will come together for this fundraiser to complete a variety of tasks that will result in UMW snap-open ornaments filled with winter treats such as Christmas trinkets and candy. The final product will cost $3. All of the teammates I have spoken with seem excited to bond while putting the ornaments together.

“I’m looking forward to getting together with the whole team to assemble the snowballs for the fundraiser,” Riker said. “It’s always a great bonding experience when the team gets together, and I love arts and crafts. Painting, assembling and filling these snowballs is one giant craft, so I look forward to spending time with my team making these snowballs that I just know will brighten up someone's day when they buy one.”

Along with the great opportunity for us to bond as a team, this fundraiser is important in helping us raise money to continue improving the program and allowing to have opportunities such as playing in tournaments. Another opportunity that members of the team have is to travel to Florida over spring break this upcoming semester to be a part of Habitat for Humanity.

“As we are planning a spring break trip to do Habitat for Humanity in Orlando Florida, we are heavily considering using part of the funds we make from the fundraiser to help pay for the cost of the trip, as it is for a good cause,” Riker said.

Using money from this fundraiser to help pay for the trip is being carefully analyzed by the executive board.