Basketball: Special Olympics Team NJ to Play Jay Dooley Foundation All-Stars in Exhibition Game
The Rumson-based Jay Dooley Memorial Foundation has teamed up with Special Olympics Team New Jersey for an exhibition game coming up on Tuesday allowing fans to see the team that will represent the Garden State at this year's Special Olympics USA Games next month.
The game will be at 7 p.m. on Tuesday at Holy Cross School in Rumson and will feature a group of all-stars, many of whom are former Shore Conference standouts, playing a fun exhibition with the Special Olympics Team New Jersey squad. Admission is free.
The JDMF was formed in memory of former Rumson-Fair Haven and Monmouth University standout Jay Dooley, who died at 29 years old in 2009 by taking his own life. The foundation is committed to assisting children with learning and other disabilities or those who suffer from depression.
JDMF has organized Tuesday's event in order to support the Special Olympics Team New Jersey Basketball squad as they prepare for the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games, which will take place throughout New Jersey from June 14-21.
“The commitment by the Jay Dooley Memorial Foundation to hold this exhibition game is truly outstanding,” said Travis Johnson, assistant coach for Special Olympics Team New Jersey Basketball. “Every aspect of preparing for the 2014 Special Olympics USA games is a tremendous commitment by our athletes and coaches. Our team is inspired by the thought of representing New Jersey and winning gold in our home state. The Jay Dooley Memorial Foundation is providing Team New Jersey with an opportunity to get better and showcase their skills.”
JDMF is an organization with its roots in basketball and has received consistent support from Holy Cross School, whose athletic director Mike Feerst, is also the head girls basketball coach at Point Beach.
“Our annual 3-on-3 basketball tournament has been a very successful event that has allowed us to help many children with special needs,” said Jerry Dooley, Jay's father and the founder of JDMF. “This exhibition game is a continuation of our commitment to the special needs community. Not only are we helping Special Olympics New Jersey athletes get better through gaining live game experience, we are building their confidence by showing them that their community is behind them.”
The Holy Cross School has hosted the Annual JDMF 3-on-3 basketball tournament since its inception.
“Holy Cross School is extremely honored to host this basketball game,” Feerst said. “We have a great relationship with Jerry Dooley and the Jay Dooley Memorial Foundation. We recognize the importance of supporting people with special needs and we are happy to host the Special Olympics Team New Jersey basketball team.”
Members of the Center for Vocational Rehabilitation’s (CVR) Crusaders Special Olympics basketball team will also be present at the game, serving as event volunteers and special needs ambassadors.