Are you a Garnet Gull fan who would love to see the mascot and Point Pleasant Beach High School win a national contest?
Then you better move fast because voting in the statewide round of a USA Today contest ends at 3 p.m. March 5.
The Garnet Gull, the mascot for Point Beach High School, is one of five high school mascots in N.J., and one of 255 schools across the U.S., competing for the title of "Best High School Mascot" in a national contest.
There are five high schools from each state and the District of Columbia up for the title of "Best High School Mascot" in a USA Today contest that began Monday.
First comes the state round of the contest, which pits the Garnet Gulls against the Fair Lawn Cutters; the Phillipsburg Stateliners; Red Bank Catholic Caseys and Trenton Catholic Iron Mikes and runs until 3 p.m. March 5.
The 51 state round winners will advance to the second round, where they'll be divided into six regions and put up for another public vote from March 6 to March 14.
The six battle-tested regional winners will compete in the final round from March 15 until March 25 for the chance to be crowned the nation's best high school mascot.
The top five national finishers receive up to $2,000 in prize money for their respective athletic departments.
As of noon Tuesday, Fair Lawn had been running second among the five New Jersey competitors, but had garnered less than 2 percent of the vote. A strong early push by Point Pleasant Beach had them way ahead of the pack with more than 94 percent of the nearly 3,000 votes cast so far.
However, by Wednesday afternoon, the Fair Lawn Cutters had about 52 percent of the vote in the top spot and the Garnet Gulls had second place with just under 45 percent.
The Fair Lawn Cutters, named for a half-dozen football players who ditched class to catch a movie in Paterson some 70 years ago, possess one of the more unique nicknames of any school in the state, according to USA Today.
For those interested, click here to read the full story of how the Cutters got their name from Fair Lawn sports historian and football announcer, Dick Englehardt.