The San Jose State University women's swimming and diving, men's water polo and women's water polo teams participated in the recent "Top Beam" ceremony celebrating a major step in the construction of the new Spartan Recreation and Aquatic Center.
Scheduled to open in 2019, the Aquatic Center of the project includes two outdoor decks, an outdoor 50-meter competitive pool with diving platform, team locker rooms and offices for team coaching staffs.
Located centrally on the main campus, the 128,000 square-foot facility also includes an indoor running track, three full basketball courts, volleyball and badminton courts, a multi-purpose activity court, a rock climbing and bouldering area, workout and fitness stations, locker rooms for the student body.
"At the moment, we're basically driving 20 minutes each way a day to practice and to games. For future freshmen in the dorms, they could walk straight out and in a minute be at the home pool," said Justin Pickering, a freshman men's water polo player from New Zealand.
"We'll have our own pool to play in instead of using someone else's pool," said Bakersfield, Calif., sophomore Caroline Kerwin of the Spartans' women's water polo team. Presently, the water polo teams practice and have their home matches at West Valley College in Saratoga, Calif. The women's swimming and diving team last had a home meet during the 2016 season.
"Being so far away, it's hard for fans to come out and watch us play. On campus, it will be a lot easier."
Sophomore swimmer Gabby Heng from Walnut Creek, Calif., sees the recent ceremony as a big boost to recruiting future Spartans.
"Right now, we've only been able to show potential recruits a dirt pit, but now we can show them something they can look forward to," Heng said about the project funded by student fees. "We are so excited and grateful for everything."