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Medaille expands its athletic complex to expand student base

A look at the new athletic field from behind the netting
Mike Desmond
A look at Medaille College's new athletic complex from behind the netting.

Medaille College sees its expanding athletic complex on Elk Street in Buffalo as a tool for increasing its student enrollment and involving its student body in supporting sports teams.

Working with Ontario Specialty Contracting, Medaille has already started playing on Phase One of the sports complex: men's and women's soccer and lacrosse along with field hockey. There's also a building with indoor facilities, like a fitness center and lockers.

"We have a 20,000-square-foot building that has six locker rooms — two for the home team, two for the visitors, two for the referees —a 4,000-square-foot state-of-the-art strength and conditioning center, two classrooms, trainers centers," said Medaille President Ken Macur.

On the way by March 22 is baseball, softball and more field space for the sports already playing there.

Macur said it's all part of an organized plan to add students and add students from farther away.

"Athletics is an opportunity for colleges like Medaille to attract students from all over the country and from all over the world," he said. "With our athletics program, we have attracted students from nearly 20 states around the country and nearly 15 countries around the world. Students want to play ball. They want to get a great education and it's part of our enrollment growth strategy to expand our athletic footprint."

Macur said the college looks for sports Medaille can win, like its success bowling in national championships, and will bring students from other sports to games as support in the stands for the Mavericks.

"You have instant community on the team, instant community athletics, and it gives the students another opportunity for engagement within the campus community," Macur said. "So we call it "Mavs for Mavs," where we actually will bus our student athletes to other competitions that aren't their own. So we'll have 75-80 other student athletes showing up for a field hockey game, showing up for basketball games."

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.