The collapse of The Dome has the University of Alaska Anchorage indoor track and field team running back home.
“We’re going to focus on what we can do, not what we can’t do,” said head coach Michael Friess, who’s now in his 27th season. “We’re going to train hard and fortunately we’re in a sport that it’s about how strong and fast you are and that’s what we’re going to continue to focus on.”
The coach’s program has been utilizing The Dome as both a training ground and recruiting tool for many years. It’s paid dividends in the form of championships and All-Americans. Friess has been named Coach of the Year 11 times by the Great Northwest Athletic Conference for both indoor and outdoor versions of the sport.
But the sports complex went down early Sunday morning under the weight of snow, forcing UAA and many other teams in Anchorage to scramble for another place to ply their trade. So the Seawolves are heading back to the Alaska Airlines Center.
“Fortunately, we do have a good facility here at the Alaska Airlines Center,” Friess said. “Clearly not a track and field facility, but something we can work and adapt to what our needs are for the most part.”
Now that The Dome is no longer available, the coach said it’s evident how important the facility had become.
“It’s really indispensable. We need to get it up and running, the community needs to come together with it and help as much as possible and so I think, Dome appreciation time? Yep, absolutely.”