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Sunday, October 26, 2014
Skelos Complex work nears completion in Rockville Centre
Molloy funding ‘state-of-the-art’ softball field to be shared by college and village schools
Alex Costello/Herald
Work at the Skelos Complex has continued all winter. Weather permitting, the new field is set to open next month.

Renovations to Klein Field at the Dean G. Skelos Sports Complex, including the creation of a softball field that meets NCAA specifications, will be completed by March 1, weather permitting, according to Rockville Centre Mayor Francis Murray.

The new field, funded by Molloy College, does not yet have a final price tag. But according to the contract between the village and Molloy, the cost will not exceed $1.6 million. The contract includes an option allowing the college to spend an extra $60,000 on machinery for field upkeep.

The agreement, dated Sept. 14, 2012, gives the college the NCAA-regulation softball field it wanted, and provides the village and the Rockville Centre School District with the cost-free use of the upgraded field.

According to Deputy Mayor Nancy Howard, Molloy will reserve the field for its use from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. each day from February through May and from September through November.

“When we were working the new agreement, the schools, the clubs and the village met and had come up with a working schedule that everyone could live with,” Howard explained. “It required some flexibility on everyone’s part, but it really accommodates everyone’s needs, just the same as the [other] fields.”

The new agreement maintains an arrangement between the village and Molloy that gives the college access to the complex’s North and South fields.

The construction of the new field will include the installation of artificial turf, a new backstop, new dugouts, a pitchers’ warmup area, batting cages, a press box and a scoreboard. There will also be a small practice field, outside the main field’s fences, mostly for younger players, Howard said.

“It gives our children a wonderful opportunity to play on an NCAA field, a state-of-the-art field,” Murray said. “We’re going to have so much time on the field for our children. It is far beyond what we could do with our taxpayer dollars.”

Howard explained that although Molloy’s softball program begins earlier than South Side High School’s and there will be overlap, the school district will be able to use the field for some of its games and practices.

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