By: Nicole Shakhnazarova, Contributing Writer
When the new tennis courts, with a price tag of around $700,000, opened for the women’s team in January the on-campus facility instantly entered the Top 200 Best College Tennis Facilities in the nation.
Construction on the project took about six months due to inclement weather.
“We genuinely thought it would take much longer,” Juan Ferrer, the chief builder of the courts, said. “This project was so weather dependent because if it rained or snowed, then that set us back on a week’s worth of work at least.”
Before the renovation, the courts were the traditional US Open colors, however Towson’s Athletic department wanted the courts to represent Towson.
“It took a while for us to adjust to the grey and yellow color scheme because we are all so used to the blue and green,” Lucy Williams, Towson tennis captain, said. “But coming to think of it now this represents Towson more so than the other colors and we’re so excited to invite other universities for tournaments on these perfect new courts.”
Even though the building side of this project is completed, Towson has some minor improvements to make soon.
“We have eight girls on this team and it’s unbelievable how six of them are international,” Head Coach Doug Neagle said. “We have girls from all across the globe – England, France, Slovakia, Netherlands, Ukraine and the US so to represent that we are having each of their flags up on the fences.”
Towson’s new courts have already been used this semester when Towson Tennis picked up a conference win against Delaware as well as wins against Coppin State and UMES. This new outdoor tennis complex is now a fully functioning one, as the team uses them for their daily practices.
Towson University’s Athletics Department’s next project is to upgrade the Johnny Unitas Stadium, adding more seats for viewers and spectators and renovating the current seats to more comfortable ones.
“We aren’t quite sure when this will take place just yet,” Kelly Webb, the Associate Athletic Director for Compliance, said. “However it is in our plans to do so because the football, lacrosse, outdoor track & field home games attract a lot of spectators and we would like to accommodate them with an unforgettable experience with each game they attend.”
Last year the Softball team received a new Softball pitch costing roughly $1 million.
“This university’s athletic program is a growing beacon of hope,” Neagle said. “It’s exciting to see the changes that have already been made and ones that are going to be made in the future, the athletes here are very fortunate to have these excellent facilities.”
Nicole Shakhnazarova is player on the Towson Tennis Team.