Construction begins on new UHV sports medicine facility

Jessica  Rodrigo By Jessica Rodrigo

Jan. 10, 2014 at 7:03 p.m.
Updated Jan. 9, 2014 at 7:10 p.m.

University of Houston-Victoria Jaguar athletes will soon have a new place to recover from sports injuries.

Early Friday, TBC Commercial Construction, of Portland, started work on a permanent UHV's Athletics Department sports medicine facility.

Student-athletes who currently need attention for sports injuries may visit the 400-square-feet facility housed in the Jaguar Court dorm.

By mid-March, they'll move to a new 1,500-square-foot facility off Ben Wilson Street.

"They're saw-cutting the floor to do some plumbing for some equipment that's going in there," Ash Walyuchow, UHV athletic director, said Friday.

The cost of the new building is just below $175,000, said Brenda Svetlik, UHV director of capital projects.

"The construction is scheduled to take about two months," she said.

The building, owned by George Totah, is leased to UHV and was used for storage. Now, it will become a part of its athletics office.

In November 2012, the athletics department received a $69,800 grant from the M.G. and Lillie A. Johnson Foundation. The money was used to purchase equipment used in the interim facility that will be moved to the new location.

"It'll let us be a little more efficient because we'll be able to consolidate all of what we're doing into one location," said Walyuchow. "It'll be a top-notch facility for our students for preventing and rehabbing injuries."

The interim facility utilizes two dorm rooms dedicated to working with students but has just enough space for two treatment tables, he said.

UHV has about 120 athletes who will use the facility during the year, said Paul Ebner, UHV sports information specialist. That includes attention to bruises, sprained ankles, pulled muscles, rehabilitation and more to treat minor to major injuries.

Having a larger space to work with the athletes means more students will have a chance to recover from injuries in a reasonable window of time and receive preventative maintenance.

"It's been difficult trying to get kids in there in a small amount of room," said Ebner. "Instead of one kid at a time, we can probably work three or four at a time."

The new space will have room for multiple treatment tables, taping stations, space for rehabbing, strengthening and a wet space that includes a whirlpool.

Walyuchow worked closely with UHV Head Trainer Thomas Pribyl to plan the needs for the new space and purchased all the new equipment before the location was worked on.

"We've done a good job with our interim facilities, but once we get into a permanent space like this, it's going to be a whole different ball game for student-athletes," said Walyuchow.



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