It appears minor league baseball is coming to Morgantown.
A press conference held by Pat O’Connor, President of Minor League Baseball and Ben Hayes, President of the New York-Penn League, will be held Tuesday morning in the Coliseum.
It’s expected that a team, probably in the Pittsburgh Pirates’ system, will play in the new stadium that is going to be built at the University Town Center with tax increment funding. It will share the stadium with the WVU baseball team, which this year is playing most of its “home” games away from what has been the home stadium, Hawley Field, which the school had deemed inadequate to host Big 12 baseball.
It is hoped that the stadium will be ready for a team to move in in the spring of 2014.
WVU athletic director Oliver Luck has led the move for a new stadium and is using the plan he used as general manager of Major League Soccer’s Houston Dynamo as a model. That franchise used both sales and property tax TIF to build a $100 million soccer stadium.
This stadium will be built on a smaller scale.
“This one’s going to be much, much smaller (in cost) obviously, but we’re using the same concept, and I know that it can work because I’ve gotten to witness it firsthand,” Luck said when announcing the plan. “I used the property and the sales tax TIF, so I understand how both work.
“We talked to the developer and had a lot of discussions over the last five weeks or so, and decided this would be a good thing for the developer, a good thing for the Morgantown area and a good thing for the University.”
There has been a similar relationship between Penn State and the State College Spikes, sharing the school’s Lubrano Park since 2006.
Hayes spoke about this issue last summer.
“I met with Oliver, I met with the developer, I met with state Sen. Bob Beach. I met with some of the council members. I was up there for the economic summit that occurred, trying to get an idea how the area does economically,” Hayes said.
“There’s a lot of that that goes into it, figuring out whether or not the market is going to fit the New York-Penn League long term.”
Hayes admitted he came away impressed.
“I can’t tell you how impressed I am. It’s a small market, there is no doubt about that. It’s not Staten Island or Brooklyn, but those aren’t typical for short-season clubs. Morgantown is typical of a short-season club’s city,” he said.
“I think it’s a good market,” Hayes continued. “Economically, I think it’s a stable market with growth potential. The people are very friendly, very sports oriented and very loyal to West Virginia University, and that’s a great thing.”
It appears minor league baseball is coming to Morgantown.
East’s Postlewait, North’s Latocha toss no-hitters
Tori Postlewait made a deal with her great-uncle, Kenny Carpenter, before her freshman season.
If the Bees’ pitcher tossed a no-hitter, Carpenter promised to give her $20.
Well, it took four years, but it’s finally time for Postlewait’s great-uncle to pay up.
East tennis splits with Polar Bears
Fairmont Senior and East Fairmont split a pair of tennis matches Thursday, with Fairmont Senior winning the boys’ match and East Fairmont taking the girls’ competition.
In the Bees’ 6-1 girls’ victory, Cara Laswell took second singles, 8-2. Erica Gorman won third singles, 8-1. And Carrington Reese won fourth singles, 8-3.
HERTZEL COLUMN: Under pressure, NCAA decides to change rules
At first glance, it appears that they do not go hand-in-hand, a pair of rules changes the NCAA’s Legislative Council approved this week, sending them off for what seems to be smooth sailing toward becoming rules.
McCutchen, Alvarez lead Pirates over Brewers
Andrew McCutchen hit his first homer of the season and drove in three runs, Pedro Alvarez had a three-run shot and pinch-hitter Josh Harrison broke a tie with a long ball in the seventh inning as the Pittsburgh Pirates handed the Milwaukee Brewers their first road loss, 11-2 on Thursday night.
Means, WVU baseball shut out Oklahoma
Junior left-hander John Means of the WVU baseball team threw eight shutout innings and the Mountaineers had a five-run first inning en route to a 7-0 victory over Oklahoma on Thursday evening at L. Dale Mitchell Park.
The Mountaineers (18-15, 3-6 Big 12) broke a six-game Big 12 losing streak after being swept by TCU and Oklahoma State in back-to-back weekends. WVU had 16 hits and did not make an error for the second-straight game.
FURFARI COLUMN: Dr. Graber disagrees with Gee’s stance on Turnbull firing
Dr. Stephen Graber, an associate professor at the West Virginia University School of Medicine, is among the latest WVU teachers to deplore Oliver Luck’s firing of veteran wrestling coach Craig Turnbull.
He raised some significant questions about that issue last Monday in a meeting of the WVU Faculty Senate.
University hands Huskies first loss; East edges Elkins
The mercy rule has been a familiar part of North Marion’s softball season.
Through the first seven games, the Huskies regularly pounded their opponents with stingy defense, sharp pitching and timely hitting. Rarely did a game go all seven innings for the previously undefeated team.
Huggins signs junior college guard
Coach Bob Huggins completed his 2014-15 West Virginia University recruiting class on Wednesday and deemed it a success after receiving a signed letter of intent from junior college guard Tarik Phillip.
Phillip joins Jevon Carter of Maywood, Ill., and Daxter Miles of Baltimore’s Dunbar High and out of Notre Dame Prep in Massachusetts in the 2014-15 recruiting class.
HERTZEL COLUMN: WVU gymnast hopes to stick her final landing
The reaction, one suspects, was the same as most people who see either a picture of West Virginia University gymnast Hope Sloanhoffer or meet her for the first time in person — a quick double take, maybe even stumbling over the first few words of an introduction.
Pirates shut out by Reds’ Cueto, 4-0
Johnny Cueto was on his game, and the only thing that the Pirates could do was watch.
Cueto pitched his third career shutout against the team that beat him in the NL wild card game, and Joey Votto hit a two-run homer that led the Cincinnati Reds over the Pirates 4-0 Wednesday for their first winning series this season.
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- East’s Postlewait, North’s Latocha toss no-hitters