Facilities give athletes edge

Courtesy of CBU

To keep California Baptist University athletes performing at their best, the university does its part by providing athletic facilities that suit the needs of every sports team on campus.

The newest facility on campus is the Events Center, which opened its doors in May 2017. The Events Center caters to home basketball games and can hold more than 5,000 fans in attendance to cheer on the Lancers.

The oldest sports facility on campus is Van Dyne Gymnasium, home to both women’s volleyball and men’s wrestling .

“(It is great) having the Events Center because now we only share the Van Dyne Gym with men’s wrestling,” said Branded Higa, head coach of women’s volleyball. “It is now convenient for the student-athletes because we have a more open schedule to practice.

In the summer of 2005, Van Dyne umderwent a $300,000 renovation to accommodate the growing university.

“The biggest part of the rennovation was the flloors, it is now state of the art,” Higa said. “They added more seating, put in the school’s logo (at the time) and changed the paint color to match the school’s newer colors.”

“We put in a brand new floor last spring and painted it specially for volleyball,” said Bryan Engle, associate director of Athletics. “One of the great things (about the renovation, is that) when you look inside you know it is a volleyball gym.”

While most sports have their own facilities for practice and game use, men’s golf travels around Riverside from course to course to find a place to practice. TL Brown, head coach of men’s golf, said although he sees Division I schools with their own facilities, CBU must use community courses.

“The first two facilities we visited this season were owned and operated by the schools,” Brown said. “My focus long- term with (women’s head coach) Mark Machado is to buy property for men’s and women’s golf.”

“Because of our partnerships with different golf courses around the area, men’s and women’s golf is able to utilize the areas,” said Engle.

For the time being, there are no plans set to purchase land for the golf teams and to upgrade any of the facilities, said En- gle. However, that does not stop CBU Athletics department from planning ahead for the near future.

“Because of the great support on campus from our administration we are looking for ways to improve the experience for the student,” Engle said. “The university is always looking to how we can improve upon things and (give a) better experience to the athletes who use the facilities.”

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