ADA – East Central University formally dedicated its new softball/women’s soccer indoor facility Monday afternoon during ribbon-cutting ceremonies attended by more than 100 people, including members of the softball, soccer and dance teams.

The building, situated between the ECU softball and soccer fields, houses coaches offices for softball and soccer, batting cage for softball, locker rooms for softball and women’s soccer, weight room, laundry room, restrooms and concession stand.

“We appreciate the great efforts that have gone into this project,” said ECU President Dr. Bill Cole. “It presented a number of major challenges. We were about 35 percent over our cost estimates, but with a redesign, restructure and a way of finding additional funds, we were able to accomplish this.

“At this point in time, we feel like a load has been lifted. I would like to add my congratulations and appreciation to everyone who was involved in this. We’re very proud of the facility. It’s as nice as anyone could’ve imagined and maybe even more.”

The opening of the facility also coincides with a special NCAA anniversary.

“This is the 25th year for (NCAA) women’s sports championships and I can’t think of a better time to highlight that and celebrate it with this,” said Dr. Susan Payne, ECU’s NCAA representative for women’s sports and coach of the women’s and men’s cross country teams.

For 12th year head softball coach Ron Miller, it was a long time coming, but a facility he is certainly proud of.

“This is for our previous 11 teams that were here before. This is without question the best (indoor) facility in the Lone Star (Conference) North,” Miller said. “I know our players are proud of this facility and it is a well-built building.”

Head soccer coach Heather Beam is also overjoyed by the facility.

“It’s definitely our feeling of home. Words can’t express how it makes your program look and your program feel,” said Beam. “My players can’t thank you enough and it’s definitely changing our program and Ron’s (softball) program forever.”

Visiting teams for softball and soccer will also be able to utilize the locker rooms.

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