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Senior Director in Field Development for Autism Speaks Nicole Thornton (center) joins Fontbonne Coach Frank Marinello along with some of the players and parents of the Varsity Softball Team who helped to raise over $7,000 at the charity tournament on April 29 at the Bergen Beach Sports Complex. Photo by Jim Dolan.
Senior Director in Field Development for Autism Speaks Nicole Thornton (center) joins Fontbonne Coach Frank Marinello along with some of the players and parents of the Varsity Softball Team who helped to raise over $7,000 at the charity tournament on April 29 at the Bergen Beach Sports Complex. Photo by Jim Dolan.

“It was just a beautiful day for Fontbonne,” said the school’s softball coach Frank Marinello referring to the efforts of the JV and Varsity softball players and their families who helped to raise over $7,000 for Autism Speaks in an all-day tournament that hosted 21 teams from the metropolitan area.

The tournament, which is in its third year of operation, has raised close to $25,000 and was started by Marinello who was inspired to give back to the organization that had helped his teenage nephew, Joe Gavinelli.

Overseeing the charity event this year was Senior Director in Field Development for Autism Speaks Nicole Thornton, who staffed an information table regarding available services and community outreach.

Tournament-wise, the Bonnies played inspired softball, winning both games of their doubleheader over Notre Dame of Staten Island and Preston from the Bronx in two “Mercy Rule” victories. However, in prior league play the week before, the Bonnies lost two games coming off the Easter break.

First, the Bonnies suffered a 7-4 loss to St. Francis Prep and then an 11-1 loss to Molloy that allowed the Stanners to put a lock on first place with an 8-0 record for the first seed in the upcoming playoffs.

Winding down the regular season, Fontbonne has a regular season record of 3-5.

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