West Virginia Northern Community College Welding Students Create ‘Futsal’ Goal for Wheeling City Park

Structure will combine basketball hoop with soccer goal

Photo by Scott McCloskey West Virginia Northern Community College welding students recently constructed an all-in-one basketball hoop/soccer (Futsal) goal that will be a one-of-a-kind structure in Wheeling, according to city officials. Pictured with the structure are from left: students, Josh Thacker, John Duplaga, Tyler McCracken and Cameron Kefauver, WVNCC Welding Program Director Brandy Killeen, City of Wheeling Director of Parks and Recreation Director Jesse Mestrovic, Wheeling Mayor Glenn Elliott, Wheeling Councilwoman Wendy Scatterday and WVNCC Interim President Mike Koon.

WHEELING — When West Virginia Northern Community College welding students were looking for a project to create this semester that would have a “lasting impact” in the local community, City of Wheeling Director of Parks and Recreation Director Jesse Mestrovic provided a creative idea that would fit the bill.

Four of the school’s welding students were able to use what they learned over the last two years to create an all-in-one basketball hoop/soccer (Futsal) goal that will be a one-of-a-kind structure for the city. Welding Program Director Brandy Killeen said she was looking for a project her class could work on together and be graded on.

“I wanted to have the students create something that could have an impact in the community,” Killeen explained. “I wanted it to be something that would have a lasting effect that the students could see in the community and be proud of,” she added.

Killeen said she reached out to Mestrovic to see if the city had any needs that the students could help fulfill. Mestrovic, who oversees the redevelopment for city playgrounds through a Community Development Block Grant said he had the perfect idea.

“I saw a structure over in Europe that was a basketball hoop/soccer goal combination that I thought would be perfect to maximize the space in Jensen Park,” Mestrovic explained. “It was going to be too expensive to purchase, so I floated the idea to Brandy and she thought it would be a perfect project for the students,” he added. The two-in-one structure will be placed on a basketball/soccer (Futsal) court that is yet to be constructed at Jensen Park at the southwest end of Wheeling Island. Futsal is a game similar to soccer, but is played on a hard surface.

Killeen had the students do research on the unique structure before they got started. Over the next several weeks, the class laid out the heavy metal steel piping and welded the structure together. Participating students, including, John Duplaga, Cameron Kefauver, Tyler McCracken and Josh Thacker will all be graduating Friday at the WVNCC Commencement at WesBanco Arena.

“The students did a great job and are extremely talented welders,” Killeen said.

She added the students were able to use what they learned over the last two years and they had a lot of fun in the process.

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