Luther College Chips

Summer Sprucing

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Facilities made renovations on both the tennis courts and football field over the summer.

Facilities made renovations on both the tennis courts and football field over the summer.

Will Heller ('16) | Photo Bureau

Will Heller ('16) | Photo Bureau

Facilities made renovations on both the tennis courts and football field over the summer.

Katrina Meyer, News Editor

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Luther College renovated the tennis courts and football field to improve the safety and playability of both surfaces over the summer. Both projects were funded by donors.

Director of Facilities Services Jay Uthoff described the process of choosing which areas needed renovation.

“The master plan process had identified areas of concern that weren’t up to the standards of our peers,” Uthoff said.

According to Uthoff, the tennis courts had numerous large cracks that were beginning to affect the team’s ability to play. After that was identified as an area of concern, a donor stepped forward to help.

The football field was identified as an area of concern because Luther was the last school in the IIAC conference to not have an artificial turf field. Turf helps the safety and playability of the players. Several people stepped forward to help with that project, Uthoff explained.

According to Head Men’s and Women’s Tennis Coach Adam Strand (‘04), all 12 tennis courts were remodeled using post tension concrete thanks to an anonymous donation of over a million dollars.

Photo Courtesy of Photo Bureau
The new tennis courts are designed not to crack despite dramatic weather changes.

“Post tension concrete is a series of cables below the courts that are connected and pull, so as that first freeze comes and those courts start to freeze together and then thaw, those cables are going to keep it together more,” Strand said. “The science behind it is that we are not going to see these big cracks anymore. We may over time see some hairline cracks, but it is nothing that is going to impact the court surface or the ability to play.”

Student athletes are also very excited about the renovations over the summer. According to team captain Brady Letney (‘18), the football team is looking forward to the opportunities that the new turf presents for the team.

“It’s a unique playing surface,” Letney said. “Other than Boise State, not many other schools have a blue turf. It brings a sense of excitement and pride. I also think that we are excited to be playing on turf because it is a safer environment. I feel like it enhances how we play.”

The tennis team is also excited with their new venue and the new feel that the renovations gave the courts, Anna Pearson (‘18) said.

“We have some lower fences in certain areas which is nice because it allows for more fans and spectators,” Pearson said. “It is a more welcoming environment for spectators, so we are hoping to get more fans out there which will be super fun. We love the courts and they are beautiful.”

The new football field was dedicated before Luther’s home opening football game against St. Olaf on Saturday, Sept. 9. The tennis courts will be dedicated in a ceremony before the alumni match on Saturday, Sept. 16.

 

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