Pittsburg State basketball benefactors Alan and Roberta Whetzel were formally recognized for their leadership gift for the renovation of John Lance Arena on Saturday as the new Whetzel Court was dedicated on Jan. 5.
The Whetzels made a significant contribution last spring to help with the renovation of the arena. Renovations included a wall-to-wall maple hardwood that encompasses the main court and two practice courts, new seating and new shooting standards. The gift provides improvements that benefit both Pitt State basketball and volleyball athletes and their fans.
As part of the dedication, the Whetzel Court name was unveiled and the Whetzels were given framed men's and women's basketball and volleyball jerseys and a framed print of the new court.
“To walk onto the new court in the new-look Weede is an amazing feeling,” Lizzy Jeronimus, a sophomore forward on the women’s team, said. “Just practicing on it gets us pumped up, and I love playing on it in front of our fans.”
Pitt State players and coaches said the renovations have and will long be vital to the teams’ success.
“The renovations have improved our practices, given our players more individual time on the goals and will create a tremendous home-court atmosphere during the games,” Women’s Head Coach Lane Lord said. “We’re super excited about the new John Lance Arena, and we couldn’t be more grateful to the Whetzels for their support of our programs.”
Rico Pierrevilus, a senior forward on the men’s team, said he gets “pumped” just looking at the new court.
“It’s a beautiful place to play basketball,” Pierrevilus said. “It’s laid out well, and the court is amazing. We are blessed to have the support of Mr. and Mrs. Whetzel and for them to invest in our program.”
Men’s Head Coach Kevin Muff also expressed appreciation to the Whetzel family for their donation to PSU.
“The improvements at John Lance Arena have benefited not just the basketball programs, but also all of the programs that utilize our facilities,” Muff said. “We are blessed to have such support for our teams and our fans.”