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High School Seniors Lead Push for Indoor Baseball Practice Facility

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Copyright 2013 The Post Register
All Rights Reserved

Idaho Falls Post Register (Idaho)
November 15, 2013 Friday
Main Edition
THE WEST; Pg. C1
435 words
Seniors lead way on indoor facility
By KIRSTEN JOHNSON,

Two Hillcrest High School students are spearheading efforts to build a 5,000-square-foot indoor baseball practice facility near the high school's baseball field. Construction started Thursday.

Seniors Tyler Patterson and Tanner Stenquist, both 17, are leading the $70,000 to $100,000 effort to fulfill their senior project requirement - 20 hours of service required of all seniors to graduate - baseball coach Scott Barr said.

Completion of the building is targeted for late January, about a month before baseball season gets underway, Barr said. But the exact completion date depends on fundraising. To date, the students have raised roughly $30,000.

The building will feature two full-length batting tunnels, a netted area for T-ball and soft-toss batting practice and AstroTurf flooring space for indoor drills, Patterson said. Once completed, about 90 baseball and softball players will use the facility for winter training and early spring practices. Youth leagues, traveling teams and summer camps will be able to rent the space during the high school's off-season.

""I think it will help tremendously,"" Stenquist said. ""Here in Idaho, we have maybe three or four good months of baseball weather and the rest is so freezing cold.""

Local businesses are donating materials and services toward the project, including Landon Excavating Inc., which donated roughly $3,000 in excavation costs, and Harrington & Co, which donated siding and materials. About 50 students in a construction class at Technical Careers High School will build the facility, keeping labor costs minimal.

""It'll be a big task,"" construction teacher and softball coach Mark Hillyard said. ""But this is actually kind of a simple project to teach them the basic stuff - they're just building a rectangular box.""

Stenquist and Patterson are close to meeting their 20-hour project requirement with all the planning and fundraising they've done since Barr first pitched the idea in August. But they have no plans to quit.

""At first, it was really just to get my hours and get it done,"" Patterson said. ""But as the project has progressed, I've realized it's definitely more about seeing the facility built and benefiting teams that will come along in the future.""

How you can help

To help two Hillcrest High School students raise money for an indoor baseball practice facility, fuel distributor Brad Hall & Associates is donating a penny per gallon of gasoline bought at the Tesoro gas station on East Sunnyside Road and South Hitt Road through Nov. 30. Those wanting to help can also email Scott Barr at barrs@d93.k12.id.us to make a donation.

November 15, 2013

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