Willamette Baseball Team Upgrades John Lewis Field

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- The Willamette University baseball team began its fall practices on Thursday, Sept. 24 at John Lewis Field on a brand new natural grass infield. This past summer, Willamette players and coaches tore out the old infield and slowly began putting it back together.

The primary reason for the project, which took seven days from start to finish, was to laser-level the infield surface and to rebuild the pitching mound and home plate areas. Seed was planted exactly six weeks before the start of practice. The team is extremely pleased with how it looks and plays.

Also this past summer, the baseball program expanded its clubhouse by adding 11 new individual lockers to the facility. The clubhouse, which also has two satellite televisions, is below the stadium and has an entrance to and from the Bearcats' dugout.

Lastly, the team's covered batting facility received a new protective roof and two brand new 70-foot cages. The facility also has lights which will allow the team to hit at any time and in any weather conditions. New pictures of the facility are located at the Willamette Baseball website.

The Willamette baseball players and coaches would like to thank Mark Majeski, Skip Kenitzer, Mike Hebrard, Jim Anderson, Mickey Cochrane, Efrain Kebekol, Ron Morton, Mike Posey, Chuck Myers, Ted Anderson, Betsy Johnson, and the Post 136 American Legion baseball team for their efforts in helping complete the upgrades at the field. WU will play its first games on the new infield next spring, starting with the home opener against Lewis & Clark College on March 6.

Willamette baseball players and coaches leveled and replanted the infield this summer.

Willamette baseball players and coaches leveled and replanted the infield this summer.

The Bearcats have added 11 new individual lockers in the team's locker room.

The Bearcats have added 11 new individual lockers in the team's locker room.