Bonnie Muller wanted to pick a meaningful game.
So when she saw that the John Jay High School softball team was slated to host Conference I League A rival Arlington on Thursday, she went to coach Mike Crocco and made a suggestion:
The coach obliged.
On Thursday, the Patriots will face the Admirals in a “Pink Out” fundraiser game. T-shirts will be sold, a bake sale will take place and a 50-50 raffle will be held. All proceeds will be donated to the Miles of Hope Breast Cancer Foundation.
“What better team than Arlington?” said Bonnie Muller, whose daughter Ally Muller stars as a pitcher for the Patriots. “(Miles of Hope) is located in LaGrangeville, so we thought it would pull the community together.”
Bonnie Muller’s inspiration to put together a “Pink Out” game stemmed from no particular personal experience. However, knowing that so many people are impacted by breast cancer, she decided to anchor the movement to a fundraiser.
Crocco was all for the idea, and to his knowledge, this is the first year in which John Jay is holding a “Pink Out” game in softball. Other area teams, both within the district and within the mid-Hudson Valley, have held similar events annually.
Although Bonnie Muller couldn’t estimate how much money is expected to be raised, she “would like to hand over a big check” to Miles of Hope.
The coach, in his third year at the helm, called the parents and players “dedicated” for pulling together to make the game special.
And along with a good cause, the game is expected to deliver. Crocco anticipates the Admirals will bring a challenge, especially as it will be the teams’ second meeting in three days, after a game in Freedom Plains on Tuesday.
“(The Admirals) played Marlboro really well (in the Red Hook Invitational Tournament),” Crocco said, adding Arlington coach Dave Ballantyne “has a good team. He’s a very good coach. He’s going to have his girls ready. They’re coming to win.”
Winning has been common for both teams lately.
On Saturday, John Jay posted a 15-0 victory over Clarkstown South, which won the Section 1 Class AA title last year. Ally Muller tossed six innings while Nina Simms smacked a two-run home run. Teammate Bridgette Rooney also homered and knocked in four runs.
Despite a 5-1 loss to Marlboro in Red Hook’s tournament, the Admirals posted a 14-2 consolation game victory over the hosts. Angelina Marsella allowed one earned run on two Red Hook hits, while Cecilia McPeck finished 3 for 4 with a double and three RBI. Arlington broke the game open in the second inning, when it scored eight runs.
“It’s going to be a competitive game,” Crocco added. “It’s going to be one of those games that, whoever plays better, is going to come out on top.”
A.J. Martelli: firstname.lastname@example.org, 845-437-4836, Twitter: @AJM_PoJoSports