Construction on indoor softball facility underway at Elizabethton High School
Published 8:06 am Thursday, July 9, 2015
Even though it’s summer, there are plenty of things going up on the Elizabethton High School campus. The newest construction project isn’t as prominent as the new football field, but it should have a lasting impression.
Construction has begun on a new 2,400-square-foot indoor facility for the Lady Cyclones softball team. The structure is just behind the home dugout, which is aligned with the first base line.
It will provide the Lady Cyclones with a place to condition and prepare for their season, which is usually done during the colder months.
“When we start practice in February, it is hard to find a place to hit,” Elizabethton softball coach Ken Hardin said. “This will provide us a place to do our conditioning and run our program out of that building.
“It will be tremendous for the program, and not just these girls but for generations to come, they will be able to benefit from this building. And that is part of building a program, starting with the younger generations.”
In the near future, Hardin says, the school will add a locker room for the girls and bathrooms, so that people will be closer to the field. That space will add another 700 square feet to the project.
It is a project that has been talked about, but wasn’t thought to be a reality, until multiple people started to kick in and make it happen. The Diamond Club and the Athletic Parents Organization were huge pillars to the project, along with many other contributors.
“We’ve had a lot of people helping, and it just continued to grow,” Hardin said.
PMD’s John Allen has helped with the grade work and parents have either donated time, material or machines to the effort.
With all of the help, Hardin said he is looking to have the structure under roof when school starts, then the goal is to have the sides on the building before the cold hits.
But the Lady Cyclones won’t be the only beneficiary of the new structure, as the indoor cages will be able to be utilized by the Elizabethton baseball team and the TA Dugger teams.
“Whenever we aren’t in the facility, other groups will be able to use it,” Hardin said. “So this isn’t just good for our team, but a community that enjoys softball and baseball.”
Hardin also mentioned that his team is looking forward to the upcoming season, after his young players were able to get a year of seasoning on them. They are currently in the swing of summer practice and will be able to do team activities for a few more weeks.
To wrap up summer practice, the softball team will have an orange and black inter-squad scrimmage game to help raise money. They will not charge admission, but simply ask for donations.
A barbecue dinner also will be served, and it will be open to the community, with all ages being encouraged to attend. A date has not been set, but check back in the Elizabethton Star for more updates.