Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

Local Sports

July 18, 2012

Extreme makeover for Mount View’s Vic Nystrom Stadium

WELCH — It’s a stadium makeover for Mount View High School. Vic Nystrom Stadium, home of the Golden Knights’ football team will have a new look and safer seating when the Knights kick off the football season.

Built nearly 60 years ago as home of the old Welch High School, it was Maroon Wave Stadium until 1978 when the consolidation of Gary and Welch High Schools formed Mount View. It was known as either Golden Knights Stadium or Mount View Stadium until three years ago when it was named in honor of the late MVHS gridiron coach Vic Nystrom who headed the program from 1980-1996. Nystrom guided the Knights to the Class AAA state championship game in 1990, but MV fell to Brooke 14-7.

Situated at the intersection of US Route 52 and State Route 16, southwest of downtown Welch and about five miles from the Mount View campus, the stadium seating had deteriorated in recent years and was in dire need of renovation.

“Right now they have torn down the bleachers on the home side and are putting up new aluminum bleachers,” said MVHS Athletic Director Ed Evans.

“They have also some work to do on the visitors side. These bleachers that they are putting up will be able to be taken down in the future if we are able to get a stadium at Mount View (on campus). They would be able to be moved to Mount View (on campus) and save the cost of new bleachers.”

Rumors floated throughout the community that unless a new field were constructed, or new seating obtained, Mount View would not be able to host football games in the 2012 season. Evans confirmed that those rumors contained some truth.

“That’s true to some degree,” Evans said. “We had to have an engineer inspect the bleachers to make sure they were safe. They’re old. Let’s be real, they were in pretty bad shape. Not much had been done over the years other than replacing a few boards and so forth.”

The seating was basically a wooden board with a wooden footboard with nothing to keep fans and their belongings, or themselves, from tumbling below if they happend to slip.

“That was a board of risk issue and without having an engineer to sign off on that, we weren’t going to be able to play there,” Evans said.

Since Mount View High School opened in the fall of 1978 there have been hopes of a football stadium next to the school atop Tom’s Mountain. The baseball team has a facility at the school that opened in the 1981 baseball season. A softball field was constructed in the 1990s. There is plenty of land for a football stadium, but it’s construction remains in limbo.

“There have been numerous meeting that have taken place about the field and everything at Mount View, and we have had some people that have come in and done some things, but nothing really concrete has moved forward,” Evans said.”

The new home-side bleachers will seat a thousand fans. Evans was unsure of the capacity of the old home-side bleachers, but estimates have it between 1,500 and 2,000.  Mount View, when it opened 34 years ago was a Class AAA school with more than a thousand students.

Presently it is one of the smallest Class AA schools in West Virginia.

Mount View’s first home game is scheduled for Sept. 14 against Liberty Raleigh. Mount View opens the season on Aug. 24 at River View.

— Contact Bob Redd at bredd@bdtonline.com

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