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Ranger Athletic Facilities Continue to Receive Facelift
July 19, 2012By Kevin Maloney of NORTHWEST MISSISSIPPI COMMUNITY COLLEGE
By Brian Lentz, Student Assistant
SENATOBIA – If you’ve been on the Senatobia campus in the past year, you may have noticed several changes to the athletic facilities. The best news is, there are more upgrades on the way.
In the past year alone, several athletic facilities at Northwest have received a facelift and improvements, including the addition of the Ranger Outdoor Complex and the renovation of the McClendon Center which houses a north/south gym and two separate weight rooms.
One of the biggest improvements came to the Howard Coliseum, which is home to both Ranger and Lady Ranger basketball teams. A new gym floor surface was added to the coliseum in the summer of 2011, marking the first replacement of the gym surface since the mid-1980s. The current floor was installed by Sports Floors, Inc., and was officially made available for use prior to the start of the 2011-12 season.
For 85 years, the Northwest Ranger baseball teams have played without lights at the Ranger Field, but that all changed prior to the start of the 2012 baseball season.
“It gives us the opportunity to expand our day and keep our kids in class longer,” eighth-year head baseball coach Mark Carson said. “Now we won’t have to spend our days beating daylight for our games. Plus, it also gives us the luxury of playing under the lights.”
The lights, which cost roughly $250,000 and were installed by Musco, now allow fans to enjoy select Ranger baseball games at night for the first time in school history.
Another modification to the Ranger athletic facilities was the completion of new home and visitor dugouts at Ranger Softball Field. The dugouts, which were also completed in the summer of 2011, are now enclosed by a concrete back wall and two rows of bleachers. The new dugouts are also expected to help with weather conditions during the early portion of the season.
“We start the season in February and March, when temperatures are still cooler,” 10th-year head softball coach Mike Rowan said. “We wanted to get them enclosed to help block out certain weather conditions, and also to help it look more like a college softball field.”
Another major addition to the Northwest campus is the brand new Ranger Outdoor Complex, otherwise known as “The ROC”. The complex, which opened in the winter of 2012, features eight tennis courts, four basketball courts and two sand volleyball courts and is available for all enrolled students.
The McClendon Center, which houses the student union and will reopen this fall, has two recreational gyms and separate weight rooms for student-athletes and faculty/staff/students. The athletic weight room has four multi-stations with four double-sided platforms, leg press, three treadmills, three elliptical machines, a jammer and a dumbell rack ranging from 5 to 95 pounds.
Despite all the new additions and improvements within the past year, several more projects are in the works. “Right now, we’re currently looking on more upgrades here in the near future,” athletic director Cameron Blount said. “We’re looking at renovating the men’s and women’s visiting locker rooms at Howard Coliseum, as well as new bleachers at both the softball and soccer fields.”
There are several ways to keep track of all the new additions in Senatobia. You can visit the Northwest athletic site at www.nwccrangers.com, follow Northwest athletics on Twitter (@NWCC_Rangers), or “like” the Northwest Rangers facebook page.