By Emily Osborne, Staff Writer

The 2016 UMF Softball Team (Photo courtesy of UMF Athletics)

The 2016 UMF Softball Team (Photo courtesy of UMF Athletics)

Recently, the UMF softball team was given the chance to play in the PFX Invitational in Clermont, Florida during their first trip to Florida on March break.

“It’s going to be a new experience for us all, especially as a new team,” said sophomore Margaret Fogarty. “We are all so excited because we are a close knit team and we are going to have a great time too.”

Fundraising efforts have been in full swing throughout the year for the softball team. The girls started fundraising for the trip this past fall through a wide variety of ways.

“We sold t-shirts, yankee candles, and UMF beaver pride bracelets,” said Fogarty. “We also went around to different businesses in the area and asked if they would be interested in hanging up a sign on our softball field to promote their business and for each sign we would get $100.00.”

The softball team will also be having a new fundraiser next month. They will be hosting a spaghetti dinner on Friday, March 11, from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. in North Dining Hall. Tickets are $10.00 per person and all are encouraged to attend.

“The spaghetti dinner is supposed to be like a send off for us because we will be leaving for Florida the following week,” said Fogarty.

Although the team has had to do a lot of fundraising, they were also able to use money that was leftover in their budget from the previous season.

Though traveling to Florida may sound like a relaxing way to spend spring break, the team will be doing more than lounging on the beach and visiting nearby attractions.

“We leave on Saturday, March 19, and come back on Saturday, March 26,” said sophomore Kiana Thompson. “On Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday we have double headers which is when you have two games right in a row. Then we have Wednesday off to go to the beach, relax, and bond with the team.” The remaining days will also be spent practicing on scrimmaging.

Unlike the baseball team, going to Florida is something the softball team has never experienced before. Thompson said, “I’m pretty nervous going to Florida with such a young and inexperienced team but we might be able to pull out some wins. It is really all about the experience and getting in early games while our field here in Farmington is still under snow.”

Agreeing with Thompson, senior and student manager of the team Katrina Seeley said, “We are definitely a little nervous but we also cannot wait to go. It will be a fun first time with the group of girls we have on the team this year.

The girls are continuing to fundraise and practice as they await their journey to Florida.