BANNER ELK, N.C. --- Lees-McRae College and Director of Athletics Craig McPhail were pleased to welcome McNair and Debi Tornow to campus on Wednesday evening for a special celebration, which was held in dedication of the McNair & Debi Tornow Court in the Williams Physical Education Center during halftime of the Bobcats’ women’s basketball game against North Greenville University.
McPhail and the Tornows were joined by College President Dr. Barry M. Buxton, the Bobcat basketball teams, and Al Posadas, the owner of Performance Flooring Services, who worked tirelessly during the College’s winter break to sand, paint and finish the floor in time for the Bobcats’ first games of the New Year.
The McNair and Debi Tornow Court hosted its first basketball contest on Wednesday, January 2, when the Bobcats hosted Tusculum College in men’s basketball action.
"We started in mid-May with a need to get our floor refinished. That led to someone really wanting to make a difference in the way that it looked. We went through a couple of different designs and wanted to do something that was more like a mountain-cabin feel, using the dark and light staining and natural maple feel," said McPhail.
"We wanted a finished product where people would see it and say 'wow,' and be impressed, and I certainly believe we've done that,” expressed McPhail. “The floor is beautiful, and we have had rave reviews so far from the public and from the players who have been on it in the short time we have had it completed."
Reaction from the athletic department, campus community and fan base as a whole has been nothing but positive on the Bobcats’ Facebook and Twitter pages, according to LMC Sports Information Director Whitney Noble, with pictures of the new floor receiving dozens of likes and comments within minutes of being posted.
“It is truly amazing to see the reaction of our fans to this new addition to our athletics program,” Noble said. “We couldn’t be happier with the finished product, and I for one am extremely excited to see what the future holds for our gym and the department as a whole.”
The Bobcat athletic department hopes to raise necessary funds for needed future renovations at Williams Gymnasium, most notably its seating, as McPhail explained the school's desire to replace its current bleachers with new seating at some point.
"We desperately need to put new bleachers in the gym. We have some drawings and designs on paper, so we are looking to do that," McPhail added. "The easiest way for us to get better in our sports programs is to enhance our facilities across the board. We're trying to find ways here to make our facilities better to attract student-athletes who can come in here and make a difference both in and out of the classroom."
- LMC -