STOCKTON, Calif. – The University of Pacific Athletics department played host to it’s first inaugural Welcome Back Barbeque two Monday’s ago.
Held on the Tigers’ own Klein Family Field, this event served as a subtle thank you to all the department's donors, athletes, and faculty who continue to strive for excellence here on campus and in the Stockton community.
The night was kicked off by some lovely catering compliments of a local favorite, The Victory Grill. With all 17 respective sports in attendance at Klein for the Orange and Black the atmosphere was warm and inviting with a collection of activities planned throughout the night.
Men's basketball broadcaster Zack Bayrouty served as the evening's master of ceremonies.
The dinner was followed by Bayrouty introducing our Athletic Director Janet Lucas. Lucas took the field and expressed her sentiment in regards to the event and thanked students, coaches, staff, and guests for their efforts and contributions to our teams, the athletics program, and the University.
"This is a celebration, in particular of our student-athletes, we celebrate you as people, as students, and as athletes. We are fortunate that you are here as part of the Pacific family," expressed Lucas.
"We have gotten off to a great start this year in many ways. By working together and supporting each other, we will be able to continue our success and keep building on the tremendous foundation that has been established for Pacific Athletics."l
Lucas’ moving words were then followed by a collection of achievement, leadership, and community service awards that were acquired by some of the Pacific programs during the 2017-18 academic year. Honorees included the women's volleyball, men's soccer, and men's tennis programs.
Women’s Volleyball received an NCAA Public Recognition Award. This honor is bestowed upon on programs with an NCAA Division I Academic Progress Rate (APR) in the top 10 percent of all teams in the sport of Volleyball for the 2016-2017 year.
The Men’s Soccer program was awarded the Division I-AAA Athletics Directors Association All Sports Trophy – Champion in Men’s Soccer. This award recognizes the top men’s soccer team in all of Division I-AAA.
Men’s tennis was acknowledged by a national organization the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) for Outstanding Community Service. This honors the countless hours spent helping others in the greater Stockton community and especially for their involvement with Team Impact and a special member who joined their team as an honorary affiliate who continues to fight a life-threatening disease.
Bayrouty then introduced the new Pacific Athletic Foundations Board President Leland Noma. Noma is a local farmer of Stockton that has been an active member of PAF for five years and assisting the PAF's mission to raise funds for the university.
The night was capped off by a friendly intramural game of kickball. With three rounds ofsportsmanlike play the Athletic staff faced off against the student athletes.
Acting as a ground breaking moment for Athletics and the university, it is with hope that this special gathering will become an integral part of the traditions here at Pacific.