Baseball Facilities Upgrades

The football and basketball facilities aren't the only venues where improvements are being planned.

The West Virginia baseball team's ongoing improvements to Hawley Field continued this season with a new backstop and additions to the batting cages.

Head coach Greg Van Zant and the WVU athletic department are working on a plan to make yearly updates and additions to Hawley Field. The vision is to one day have a field with an updated press box, complete with lockerrooms and coaches offices, so it will be a complete basketball complex, much like the Puskar Center is to football's Mountaineer Field.

"It's an ongoing project," Van Zant said. "If you had $10 million, you could do a lot. But you can only do one project at a time. We have been improving this place ever since it was built in the early 1970s after the Coliseum was built on top of the old field. We are always working on it.

"This year we got a new, higher backstop behind home plate. It's really nice, and we like it a lot. And we poured concrete in the batting cages to make them bigger, and we're going to Astroturf that, maybe off Mountaineer Field (with the old turf which is about to be replaced). And we hope to add a batter's eye in center field and some pine trees behind it."

WVU would also like to add additional seating to the 1,500-seat structure and a picnic area for families.

"We'll do things one at a time," Van Zant said. "It's one step. We are very well supported by our athletic department, especially (WVU athletic director) Ed Pastilong and (assistant A.D.) Russ Sharp, who is in charge of finances. And we try to make improvements every year, and over the long haul, you've seen a big change. That is what has happened thus far, and we hope to continue to do that."

This article appeared in a previous print edition of the Blue & Gold News. For more great coverage like this, subscribe to the Blue & Gold News today!

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