Dedication for tennis courts a grand slam

Beth Sergent

September 10, 2013

POINT PLEASANT — Point Pleasant Junior/Senior High School has a new ace in the hole when it comes to its athletic complex.

On Saturday, members of the community gathered to dedicate the Harley H. Hartley Memorial Tennis Courts. The new facility has four regulation courts for both singles and doubles play, and lighting fixtures both surround the facility and are located in between the courts — making night competition a reality.

Saturday’s dedication began with remarks by PPJ/SHS Principal Bill Cottrill who called Hartley a “great, community-minded person who loved tennis.” Cottrill then spoke about the growth of the athletic complex and how PPJ/SHS was now known for having one of the best facilities in the state.

Mario Liberatore, a Jackson Foundation board member, member of the stadium committee and tennis enthusiast, spoke about realizing the dream of the athletic complex of which there were many components — how a project of that magnitude took time and support from the community. Liberatore also gave special acknowledgement to Hartley as well as his family members gathered for the dedication who helped bring the tennis courts to life.

Liberatore then spoke about the Jackson Foundation’s contribution to community projects and recognized fellow board members Charles Lanham, Jack Fowler and Dill Battle. In addition, Liberatore recognized the support from the local community for the project, including Dr. and Mrs. M.C. Shah, Dr. and Mrs. Vaidya, Dr. and Mrs. Agrawal, AB Contractor, Sen. Mike Hall.

Liberatore also gave special kudos to fellow members of the stadium committee who have pushed the athletic complex into a reality. Joining Liberatore on the committee are Troy Krebs, Ron Durst, John Roach, Denny Bellamy and Lisa Johnson. Also recognized for their support were Superintendent Suzanne Dickens and Cottrill.

After the dedication, free tennis clinics were held for adults and children with Pro Patrick Walker giving lessons alongside Bryan Mabe, MaryCarol Liberatore and Dave Stacy.

The new courts are located between the softball diamond and the football field, and both the Lady Knights and Big Blacks will be using the facility this spring for varsity tennis matches. The courts are also being utilized by the junior high school tennis team.

The tennis courts are just the latest addition to the PPJ/SHS athletic complex which includes Ohio Valley Bank Track and Field, an update of the locker and weight rooms, adding the Hartley Wrestling Center and erecting a track and field stand for timing.