The 2013 East Rutherford Easter Tournament is not the only diamond action involving county teams this week.
The Lady Trojans of Chase will travel to Myrtle Beach to take part in the Grand Strand Classic April 1-3 while Thomas Jefferson baseball will compete in the ESPN Wide World of Sports Spring Training Classic at Disney World April 2-6.
“It’s just mainly a chance for the team to relax, have a little fun, and play softball,” said Chase coach Daniel Bailey. “The girls have worked hard and have earned this opportunity.”
The Lady Trojans will play three predetermined contests against squads that hail from California, Tennessee, and New York, but they have declined to take part in the full five-day tournament.
“This is more about the team having fun and getting rejuvenated for the rest of the conference season,” Bailey said. “We only had one non-conference game so far this season, so our main goal is just to go and work on a few things so we can make a push for another conference championship when we get back.”
2013 marks the fifth year Chris White has taken a team to Disney to compete in an Easter tournament, three with R-S Central and two with the Gryphons. Even so, the prospect still excites him.
“This is the type of experience that helps build a team’s comradery,” said White. ”Nothing brings a team together like a ten hour charter bus ride. We could have flown, but I wanted to give the team a chance to have some fun and bond on that long ride.”
TJCA is slated to arrive Tuesday night and have a batting practice at Cracker Jack Stadium, the spring training home of the Atlanta Braves. The Gryphons will also play a pair of games at the same venue Thursday before spending Friday participating team building activities and visiting Universal Studios Island Adventure.
“This trip is more about relaxation and rejuvenation,” said White. “I could have scheduled more than two games, but I did not want to overburden the team with baseball. I want them to be refreshed for the final third of the season.”
Even though he admits the trip is more about fun, expect White and his charges to be all business when they step on the diamond.
“We play two very good 1A teams from New York, but I don’t see any reason why we can’t win both games, said White. “When TJCA went before, it was our first year as a program and we didn’t win a game. The nine seniors on this year’s team were freshmen then so they are excited about another chance to play at Disney. This team is much better prepared to play and win both games.”
Chase Tournament schedule:
4/1/13 Orange View (Anaheim, California) 12PM
4/2/13 Sullivans East (Bluff City, Tennessee) 2PM
4/3/13 Penn Yan Academy (Penn Yan New York) 10 AM
Thomas Jefferson schedule:
4/4/13 vs. Spencerport 10:30 AM
4/4/13 vs. Oxford Academy 1:30 PM