Baseball locker room work at Brunette continues

Facility should be ready this spring, coach says

Work continues on the basketball locker rooms at Brunette Park.

Photo submitted

Work continues on the basketball locker rooms at Brunette Park.

Maddie Wirth, Reporter

The odor upon entering Mr. Ed Freije’s theology classroom on the first floor of Kelly Hall is quite prominent.

His door is positioned near the back, where several of his baseball players’ bags are stowed. Freije ’99 took role as head baseball coach in 2017 and lead the Irish to an undefeated season and State championship, with the team capturing State runner-up honors the next year, despite not having a home field.

Brunette Park, a former Little League tournament site, was also purchased in 2017 to house Irish baseball and softball programs. The 35-acre space has been utilized since, but construction of a true baseball locker room had not begun until winter break.

The space has always been there after converting it from the Little League’s old gift shop space. But, the softball program fully installed its locker space during the 2018 season. Freije said, “We waited to make sure plans were solidified in that baseball would continue to be at Brunette (Park). We were unsure as far as other things were being built there and didn’t know what the future would hold. It has essentially been used as a changing room with shelves until now.”

The program decided to take the lead on renovations this year. Team mom Mrs. Amy Gallagher mother of junior Chris Gallagher, has been the force behind getting the project started. Junior Eamon Hays’ father, Keith, has contributed a big role of the building process as well.

Freije said he hanks “the numerous parents who have donated whether it be time, talent or monies.” He added that lots of players have been in and out helping in various tasks, too.

Freije predicts that the project should be done in the next week or two. He said, “Lockers have been built, everything has been painted and should be ready go. More cosmetic finishing touches will be done as we continue to utilize the space.”

Although the space will soon be ready, he actually will continue to encourage his players to keep the bags in the back of his classroom in case of rain-outs, away game mishaps and just what Freije termed “teenage forgetfulness.”

So perhaps that odor in Freije’s classroom will linger after all.