Laurentian supporters rally around the team

John
John Browne
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St. Lawrence produces great soccer players and, apparently, some pretty good fund raisers as well.
The 2013 Molson Challenge Cup soccer champion St. Lawrence Labatt Laurentians are well on the way to raising just over $30,000 to make the trip to Halifax for the national championship next month.

St. Lawrence produces great soccer players and, apparently, some pretty good fund raisers as well.

The 2013 Molson Challenge Cup soccer champion St. Lawrence Labatt Laurentians are well on the way to raising just over $30,000 to make the trip to Halifax for the national championship next month.

“Right now, I think we will raise the money needed,” said St. Lawrence Soccer Association president Hubert Beck, “but it’s tough trying to raise $1,000 a day for five weeks.”

In a small town with a population of slightly over 1,200, you have to be inventive and tenacious to raise that sort of money.

“I can assure everyone that the Laurentians are going to the nationals,” said Beck. “I’ll pay for it myself if I have to.”

Beck outlined some of the fund raising currently under way, including an on-line auction.

“We just hosted the provincial masters tournament and used that as a fundraiser a with 50/50 draw. A guy from Paradise won it and donated the money ($550) back. We did well on the gate. We also sold fries and moose burgers at the games, and all the officials from the area never charged any fees, so that was good,” said Beck.

He said there is a town yardsale this weekend which always goes well.

The team also has a national beer bottle drive where St. Lawrence natives across the country sell their bottles and e-mail the money to the club.

“We’re having a take-out hot roast beef dinner later, but we are taking it one week at a time,” said Beck, who also noted there have been donations from business all over the Burin Peninsula.

“There’s a super fundraising team in place.”

Beck also pointed out each team from the Molson Challenge Cup league pays an extra $500 each year to be passed on to the provincial representatives at the end of the season.

“We got about $2,000 from the gate from last weekend,” he said about the provincial finals played in St. Lawrence.

“Fans always think that all the gate money stays at home, but on final weekend, that’s not the case,” explained Beck.

“After the officials and hosting fees come out, there is a five-way spilt with the Newfoundland and Labrador Soccer Association (NLSA) getting 40 per cent, the winner getting 40 per cent, second-place getting 10 per cent and the other two teams getting five per cent each.

“I’ve always believed that the winning team should get more, and I’ve said it for years,” said Beck. “If you lose, well thank for coming, here a few beers for the bus ride home and that’s it. I don’t care who wins, that’s the way it should go.”

In any case, said Beck, a member of the St. Lawrence Soccer Hall of Fame, said the team’s financial goal will be reached.

“Our soccer family in St. Lawrence will make it happen again, I believe.”

St. Lawrence earned the right to represent the province at the Canadian Challenge Cup tournament Oct. 9-14 by defeating Feildians Ernst & Young 2-0 in the provincial final, the team’s first senior men’s crown in five years.

jbrowne@thetelegram.com

Organizations: Molson, Lawrence Soccer Association, Newfoundland and Labrador Soccer Association

Geographic location: Halifax, Laurentians

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