Cambridge, Mass. (October 18) -- The MIT Department of Athletics, Physical Education and Recreation (DAPER) recently opened the first set of six newly-replaced outdoor tennis courts at the DuPont Tennis Complex. The first group of six are now fully-operational, while the second set of six courts will open as soon as they are completed.
The project began early in the summer and encompassed a complete replacement of the playing surface, fencing and lighting on all 12 courts. Once fully complete, the complex will be one of the top tennis facilities in the region. The courts opened with a practice by the MIT men's and women's varsity tennis teams.
"They've done a spectacular job with the construction of the courts and for us as a team, it's really motivating just being out here and being able to practice in such an environment," said Dave Hagymas, MIT men's tennis head coach. "It helps in recruiting and with other teams coming in and wanting to play us in such a great facility here at MIT. Alumni coming back and seeing how nice our facilities are will also go a long way."
The replacement of the courts is being completed by Cape and Island Tennis & Track, which is located in Pocasset, Massachusetts. Cape and Island Tennis & Track is New England's largest tennis court and running track contractor that has completed over 2,000 court projects across New England. For their work, they have received an industry-leading 36 American Sports Builders Association (ASBA) Distinguished Facility Awards.
"I think it's a beautiful addition to our athletic facilities and I think the teams were really excited about playing on this for the first time and I think it will be a great venue for our matches," said Carol Matsuzaki, MIT women's tennis head coach.
The 12-court complex is the home of the MIT men's and women's tennis teams and now features a post-tensioned concrete surface, which is widely-regarded as the preferred method for new tennis court construction. The state-of-the-art surface has increased resistance to settling and/or heaving while eliminating the potential liability for structural cracking and provides a better uniformity of play.
The MIT men's and women's tennis programs have combined for 29 NEWMAC Championships and 30 NCAA Tournament appearances. The men's team has won 20 straight league titles and appeared in the NCAA's on 22 occasions, while the women's team is ranked No. 9 nationally and is coming off a trip to the NCAA Elite Eight. The women's squad has won nine NEWMAC titles and has made eight trips to the NCAA Tournament overall.