Gregory Gymnasium

Gregory Gym to become home venue for Austin Aces during 2015 season

Gregory Gymnasium has primarily played host to basketball and volleyball, but this summer it will add indoor tennis to the list.

The Austin Aces, out of Mylan World TeamTennis, announced Monday that it would play its seven home matches in Gregory Gym after playing at the Cedar Park Center last year.

“We are thrilled to have been able to find a downtown home in Gregory Gym on the UT campus as the Aces work to become Austin’s premier professional sports brand and the must-attend sporting event each summer,” Aces owner Lorne Abony said in a press release.

Abony said that getting a downtown venue was something they found while evaluating the team over the offseason both on and off the court.

“From feedback we received and the analysis that was done by our front office, we felt that a relocation to a venue located closer to the city center would be in our team’s best interest,” Albony said.

While Gregory seats 4,000 people for volleyball, the Aces said that capacity for tennis matches will be over 3,500 along with VIP tables and courtside seating.

The Aces went 6-8 in its inaugural season last year, finishing third in the Western Conference. Austin is led by former world No. 1 Andy Roddick, who also resides in the area. The roster also includes two former NCAA champions as well as the second-ranked Russian on the ATP Tour, Teymur Gabashvili.  The team is coached by nine-time Grand Slam doubles champion Rick Leach.

The Aces open up their 2015 season July 13 on the road at the Boston Lobsters and will play their first home match on July 16 against the California Dream.

Wild Art

Neuroscience junior Colton Janysek climbs the rock wall in Gregory Gymnasium Wednesday evening. Janysek meets with his friends weekly to climb.

Dell Miracle Kid, Marley, removes the hospital bracelets worn by Texas THON volunteers during the closing ceremony Saturday.

Photo Credit: Austin McKinney | Daily Texan Staff

More than 100 volunteers — including superheroes such as Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman — raised about $36,000 Saturday at Gregory Gymnasium for the annual Texas THON.

In its 11th year, the Texas THON is a philanthropic event produced by UT students where volunteers raise money by pledging to stand — literally, without sitting — for 12 consecutive hours for children in need. All proceeds go toward the Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Austin.

The organization conducts fund-raising throughout the year, which culminates in a day filled with live entertainment, free food, games and dancing. Texas THON is one of many similar events held at universities across the nation to raise money for Children’s Miracle Network hospitals.

In her Batman costume, executive chairwoman for Texas THON Caitlyn Leal said she felt the event was a success for the Dell Miracle Kids. 

“The energy was so high,” Leal said. “Our exec team had a lot of obstacles this year so the amount we raised in the matter of weeks is amazing. It was such a success. I couldn’t have asked for anything better.”

The theme of this year’s event was “Super Heroes Stand 2013,” where volunteers and Miracle Kids dressed up as their favorite superhero.

“Every year we do a new theme,” Stephanie Morgan, Plan II senior and catering and sponsorship chairwoman, said “and this year we really wanted it to relate to what Texas Thon actually is doing. We wanted to be superheroes for the kids at Dell Children’s Medical Center because they’re an inspiration to us so we want to be an inspiration to them.”

Texas THON invites Miracle Children to speak about their experiences at the event. Math junior Lisa Huynh said hearing those stories serves as an inspiration to her to “stand” for them.

“Personally it is really touching to hear all of the families come speak,” Huynh said. “I used to have a little brother that had to go to the Children’s Hospital so it’s near and dear to my heart. One of the great things about Dell is they don’t turn away kids so that’s what makes it rewarding for us to do this.”

Marley, a Miracle Kid, was one of the children that spoke at Saturday’s event. At the age of five, Marley was hit by a vehicle that affected her ability to walk. During the aftermath and her recovery, she stayed at Dell Children’s Medical Center.

“It’s a very scary place to be when you’re a young child,” she said. “It’s frightening so you guys, what you’re doing, you’re raising money obviously, and you’re helping make everything safer and it feels safer. You make it so much easier for kids like me.” 

Marley and all of those who participated in the Texas THON wore hospital bracelets with the name of different Miracle Kids on each bracelet. At the end of closing ceremony, the volunteers gathered in a circle to have their bracelets cut off their wrists to symbolize when a Miracle Child can leave the hospital. Marley walked, on her own, around the circle to cut over a hundred bracelets off the wrists of UT students and other volunteers.

“That was the first time in my life I’ve ever cried of happiness,” she said. “That shows how awesome you guys are. Thank you so much.”

Published on February 18, 2013 as "Students stand 12 hours to support Miracle Kids". 

 

Texas heads into the final week of the regular season riding a season-high 13-match winning streak after defeating the Kansas Jayhawks 3-1 Friday night at Gregory Gymnasium.

Senior outside hitter Juliann Faucette continued her latest string of impressive play, pacing the Longhorns with 26 kills — the fourth time in the last five games she’s eclipsed 24 kills — and added 15 digs for her second-consecutive double-double.

Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott recognizes that it’s the perfect time of the season for his best player to find her rhythm.

“With the way she’s been playing lately, she would be a Player of the Year candidate,” Elliott said. “Her early numbers probably won’t be good enough, but that is world class swinging, averaging over six kills a game, hitting over .400.“

“That is big time production,” Elliott said. “She is scoring more than 25 percent of our points, so that is amazing production.”

The No. 8 Longhorns (21-5; 16-2) needed a spark from junior outside hitter Amber Roberson in the decisive fourth set to propel them to yet another victory.

Roberson came off the bench and made an immediate impact for Texas, racking up five kills on just nine swings to lead UT to the win.

Texas returns to action Wednesday against rival Texas A&M before heading to Ames, Iowa to try to avenge its only regular season loss from a year ago.

On a night when Texas raised breast cancer awareness with the Volley for the Cure campaign, the Longhorns swept visiting Colorado 3-0 in front of a pink-clad crowd at Gregory Gymnasium.

The Texas faithful showed their support for Volley for the Cure by wearing pink and waving give-away pink pom-poms all match long. The pink crowd filling the stands and the gym’s brown brick walls had Gregory Gym resembling a jelly donut.

A serving error by Colorado gave Texas (9-5; 4-2 Big 12) the point it needed to sweep the match and win the final set as the Longhorns regained their winning form en route to a 25-19, 25-15, 25-20 victory. The No. 11 Longhorns got back in the win column as they consistently overpowered Colorado (5-8; 2-5 Big 12) and extended their streak over the Buffaloes to 13 matches.

“Tonight was one of the first nights that we’ve been able to play consistently throughout an entire match,” Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott said. “We’re getting good set distribution and good balance from our team.”

The Texas offense was balanced across the board with junior middle blocker Rachael Adams and junior outside hitter Amber Roberson pacing the Longhorns with 13 kills apiece. Senior outside hitter Juliann Faucette added nine kills while senior middle blocker Jennifer Doris chipped in seven.

Faucette said it was a feel-good match for the team and stressed the importance of “getting our rhythm back and getting that W under our belt for the Big 12 race.”

Adams ­— named Big 12 Player of the Week on Monday — and Faucette set the tone for the game in the first set. Faucette led the way with seven kills while Adams added five on a blistering .833 attack percentage. A kill by Faucette put Texas up 2-1 early and the Longhorns never looked back, winning the opening set 25-19.

It was more of the same for Texas in the second as Adams continued her strong play with five kills in the set, each one bringing the crowd to its feet applauding her powerful hits.

Faucette, Roberson and Doris contributed two kills each to maintain a balanced Texas attack and keep the Colorado defense on its heels as the Longhorns coasted 25-15.

“It’s tough for other teams to block us when it’s spread out and there’s a lot of options,” Faucette said.

The Longhorns showed their versatility up front in the second during a 5-0 run to push the lead to double up the Buffaloes 16-8. An Adams kill followed a Faucette block and a Doris ace to ignite Texas as the team turned it on against an outmatched Colorado team.

Texas takes on Kansas State on Saturday in Manhattan at 6:30 p.m. The Longhorns have struggled on the road this season, going 1-4 away from Austin. 

On a night when Texas raised breast cancer awareness with the Volley for the Cure campaign, the Longhorns swept visiting Colorado 3-0 in front of a pink-clad crowd at Gregory Gymnasium.

The Texas faithful showed their support for Volley for the Cure by wearing pink and waving give-away pink pom-poms all match long. The pink crowd filling the stands and the gym’s brown brick walls had Gregory Gym resembling a jelly donut.

A serving error by Colorado gave Texas (9-5; 4-2 Big 12) the point it needed to sweep the match and win the final set as the Longhorns regained their winning form en route to a 25-19, 25-15, 25-20 victory. The No. 11 Longhorns got back in the win column as they consistently overpowered Colorado (5-8; 2-5 Big 12) and extended their streak over the Buffaloes to 13 matches.

“Tonight was one of the first nights that we’ve been able to play consistently throughout an entire match,” Texas head coach Jerritt Elliott said. “We’re getting good set distribution and good balance from our team.”

The Texas offense was balanced across the board with junior middle blocker Rachael Adams and junior outside hitter Amber Roberson pacing the Longhorns with 13 kills apiece. Senior outside hitter Juliann Faucette added nine kills while senior middle blocker Jennifer Doris chipped in seven.

Faucette said it was a feel-good match for the team and stressed the importance of “getting our rhythm back and getting that W under our belt for the Big 12 race.”

Adams ­— named Big 12 Player of the Week on Monday — and Faucette set the tone for the game in the first set. Faucette led the way with seven kills while Adams added five on a blistering .833 attack percentage. A kill by Faucette put Texas up 2-1 early and the Longhorns never looked back, winning the opening set 25-19.

It was more of the same for Texas in the second as Adams continued her strong play with five kills in the set, each one bringing the crowd to its feet applauding her powerful hits.

Faucette, Roberson and Doris contributed two kills each to maintain a balanced Texas attack and keep the Colorado defense on its heels as the Longhorns coasted 25-15.

“It’s tough for other teams to block us when it’s spread out and there’s a lot of options,” Faucette said.

The Longhorns showed their versatility up front in the second during a 5-0 run to push the lead to double up the Buffaloes 16-8. An Adams kill followed a Faucette block and a Doris ace to ignite Texas as the team turned it on against an outmatched Colorado team.

Texas takes on Kansas State on Saturday in Manhattan at 6:30 p.m. The Longhorns have struggled on the road this season, going 1-4 away from Austin.