A New Court for a New Conference

Renovations Announced to the William H. Pitt Athletic and Convocation Center

On Feb. 7, Sacred Heart University (SHU) announced on social media that they are planning to renovate the William H. Pitt Center, where all Division I athletes are required to report, and majority of games are played.

Judy Ann Riccio, Director of Athletics at SHU, helped with the decision and came up with ideas about what should be done.

“The Pitt Center had not been renovated since its opening in 1997,” said Riccio. “The rest of Sacred Heart’s campus is stunning; it was time for the Pitt Center to match the same aesthetic.”

Riccio said the renovations will be helpful to the transition from the Northeast Conference (NEC) to the Metro Atlantic American Conference (MAAC).

“The renovation plans were in place when we were in discussions with the MAAC and having a brand-new arena certainly made us an attractive candidate,” said Riccio.

Steven Conn, Senior Associate Athletics Director for Communications at SHU, says that it was time for an upgrade and that there were problems for both teams and fans.

“The competition area, in many ways, was worn out, and the mobile seating units had become difficult to move,” said Conn. “Those bleachers were set back so much that it did not create an environment a home team could take advantage of.”

With the change, the arena should be able to hold around 2,200 fans.

“Comfortable chair back seating, the best technology and lighting, concessions, and a VIP area, it will be a whole different way to watch a game,” said Riccio.

Head Coach Jessica Mannetti of the Division I women’s basketball team is looking forward to the renovations being done for the team’s inaugural season into the MAAC.

“We are extremely grateful,” said Mannetti. “I think the timing could not be better. Being able to be a part of the MAAC puts you on a playing field with a lot of great universities. It’s a great opportunity for our program, and we are very grateful to have these valuable assets poured into the program.”

Men’s basketball Head Coach Anthony Latina wants the renovations to be able to help his players in practice to play better on gameday.

“Improving our practice situation and our opportunity for players to improve is really what excites me,” said Latina. “That’s what is going to help our program move the needle the most.”

Not only basketball will be affected by these new renovations. Sports like volleyball, fencing, and wrestling, will have the same impact as they will also be playing in the newly renovated Pitt Center.

The renovations start on March 18 and should conclude in the middle of the fall. The plan is to have it ready for the start of the 2024-2025 winter season.

On Saturday, Feb. 24, SHU will be having an Athletics Showcase and will show visuals of the new renovations and insights into the change to the MAAC at the Pitt Center.

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