By Jonathan Woon
Four on-campus tennis courts were removed over the summer and replaced with grass. A brand new facility is being constructed near Whittier Elementary School.
The yet-to-be-completed facility is a joint project between Southwestern College, U.S.D. 465, Winfield Recreation Commission and the City of Winfield with all entities sharing the total cost of the project.
Jason Speegle, head tennis coach, said, “For now, the old tennis courts space will simply be a grassy area until the administration decides to put something else into that area.”
With practice underway, the tennis teams can’t use the new courts. “The weather during the past few months delayed the construction somewhat and completion is estimated for the end of October,” said Speegle. “We are currently practicing on the seven existing courts at the Vaughn Tennis Center.”
The tennis teams will soon be playing on newer and nicer courts. “With the new facility, we will have access to one of the nicest and largest tennis complexes in the region,” said Speegle. “We will be able to host tournaments and matches larger than duels.”
Michael Bond, business junior, is positive about the new facility. “Having the support of the college and the town to fund the new courts only makes us feel even more appreciated and supported,” said Bond. Bond is one of the 11 players who make up the men’s tennis team.
The tennis roster has expanded from 13 players last year to 21 this year. “Our total tennis roster has expanded from seven women and six men to 10 women and 11 men this year,” said Speegle.
Even though the on-campus courts no longer exist, memories will remain for alumni and students who played on them. Kelsey Smith, elementary education junior, remembers when her parents used to play for the tennis teams while attending Southwestern. Smith said, “There are many memories taken from these courts. They were where my parents first met.”
“There was a good amount of Southwestern College tennis history made on those courts. They were everyone’s home court,” said Bond.
Jonathan Woon is a senior majoring in communication. You may email him at email@example.com