By CONSTANCIO MARTINEZ, JR.
Special for the HURRY
On Wednesday, May 4, ISD Port Isabel and PI Secondary School held a groundbreaking ceremony for the future tennis courts. The new additions were part of a $26 million bond passed last November by voters.
The current tennis courts were in such disarray that tennis tournaments assigned to Port Isabel had to be held in Brownsville, TX. Some of the downsides of not playing the games in Port Isabel were that the PI team had no advantage over the home team. Second, Brownsville has become the primary financial beneficiary when it comes to PI and all the other schools buying food for their coaches and players, not to mention potential refueling purchases for their buses.
Superintendent Theresa Capistran spoke at the ceremony and said, “It’s not fair to our students. Our Tarpon community deserves to host our Tarpon tournaments here in our community. We should keep our money here in our community. Not all of our local restaurants are taking advantage of all the other school districts coming into our community and buying from our restaurants. With the new improvements, “Our kids win and our community wins,” Capistran said.
A big welcome addition that the new facilities will provide for students are new restrooms and changing rooms, something previous courts did not have. The center will also have an outdoor terrace where students can rest and watch the rankings in a state-of-the-art space.
PIHS, tennis coach, Maria Ramon expressed her gratitude to the administration, school board and constituents for the much needed improvements. “I pray that these courts provide opportunities for this community to come together and play with family and friends for recreation, as team members competing for titles,” Ramon said.
Representations of the tennis courts and other improvements such as artificial turf for baseball and softball fields were displayed during the ceremony. Sporting director Tony Villarreal was rather enthusiastic about the new improvements.
“It’s one of the great moments in athletics. It’s a new era for us,” Villarreal said. He went on to say that they plan to bring UT, UTRGV and maybe others next spring for games and exhibition games.”We’ll have some of the best facilities not only in the Valley, but in South Texas,” Villarreal said.
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