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Wayne Post
  • Rochester Softball Classic again a success

  • The 2013 Rochester Softball Classic held at McAvoy Park featured 27 teams and benefited Camp Good Days.

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  • After putting together one of the biggest softball tournaments in the Rochester area last summer, McAvoy Park sport commissioner Joe Mondo figured there was only one thing to do for the second installment: make it bigger.
    The 2013 Rochester Softball Classic, held July 5 through 7 at McAvoy Park in Irondequoit, featured 27 teams and over 400 players from across Western New York, up from 18 teams and 270 players in 2012. The tournament again benefited Camp Good Days, with teams coming from Fulton and Watkins Glen to participate.
    “The softball community in Rochester has helped me and my family a lot over the years and putting this tournament together is my way of giving back,” said Mondo, who along with his father, Joe Sr., and uncles Rick and Carl, kept things running at a pro level all weekend. “Many of the new teams signed on after hearing positive things from some of the guys who played last year, it was great to see the tournament grow.”
    Though the final tallies were yet to be made, this year’s tournament will at least match last year’s donation of $2,000 to Camp Good Days. Each of the first two Rochester Softball Classic tournaments also honored members of the softball community who passed away over the last year. The 2012 tournament was played in memory of former senior player Danny Maddalena, with the 2013 tourney played in memory of five fallen friends: Terri Masters, Rick Secondino, Joe Nucci, Joann Sgroi and Fred Stark.
    This year’s tournament was divided in three divisions, with champions crowned in the men’s, co-ed and senior divisions. (A second senior bracket had to be canceled in respect to a player suffering a major heart attack.) Three teams from Rochester brought home the titles as Parkview Bowl won the Senior Championship, Ferra’s claimed the Co-Ed Championship and ICS/Trinity captured the Men’s Championship.
    “This is the best softball tournament going in the area, and none of it would be possible without the effort Joe puts in,” said Bill “Loader” Conge, captain of the champion Parkview team. “We really enjoy playing here.”
    Along with the growth in the number of teams participating the the tournament was the growth in local sponsors. Over 20 businesses and individuals supported this years tournament in some way, including Rick Schiffhauer of the Rochester Athletic Club who donated a new Easton softball bat for raffle and Antonio Lagares of Rochester General Hostipal who gave $850 to the cause.
    McAvoy park has played host to some of the best teams in not only the Rochester area, but the country and the world. Over 40 jerseys hang from the wall at “The Home of Softball Legends”, representing teams from throughout the park’s history who have competed and won as high as the national and world level.
    Located on the corner of Winton Road and Empire Boulevard in Irondequoit, McAvoy Park hosts a number of senior softball teams a few nights each week. The turf fields and adjoining grounds are one of the most well maintained in the area and offer teams of many sports a place they can proudly call home.
    Page 2 of 2 - “In only two years I never imagined we would have anywhere near 400 players,” added Mondo. “It’s great to see teams from all over Western New York signing up, and it feels good to provided a fun tournament for so many people with so many different divisions. I have already contacted the town about booking the same dates for next year and hopefully we continue to grow.”
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