University High receives $1 million commitment for on-campus sports complex

Complex to be named after former student Ronald ‘Duke’ Pride

MORGANTOWN — Nancy Pride Raley, the sister of Ronald “Duke” Pride, a 1963 graduate of University High School, has agreed to donate $750,000 to aid in the construction of the Sports Complex at UHS and to commemorate her brother.

Duke Pride was an accomplished multi-sport athlete at UHS, excelling in baseball, basketball and football, and was one of the initial inductees into the University High School Athletic Hall of Fame in 2018. He passed away unexpectedly in 1970 due to an embolism, leaving behind his parents, John W. and Martha Pride of Cassville; a sister, Nancy Pride Raley; a wife, Sharon Alexander Pride; and an 18-month-old daughter, Regina “Deena” Pride, both of Morgantown.

“I have never forgotten Duke’s accomplishments at UHS,” Pride Raley said. “People have told me he was the best overall athlete to ever graduate from our school. He still holds the single-game scoring record in basketball at UHS. When I heard about this project to build a sports complex, I decided this was a great way to preserve his memory, name and legacy.”

The Sports Complex at UHS will be named for Ronald “Duke” Pride.

Pride Raley has also pledged $250,000 to further aid in the construction of the Sports Complex and to commemorate her husband, John A. Raley, a 1958 graduate of University High and one of the starting pitchers on the 1957 team that went 19-2. John Raley was named West Virginia honorable-mention all-state after his senior season. The baseball stadium will be named for John A. Raley.

“We are so thankful for the Raley family,” Heidi Metheny, chairperson of the Sports Complex at UHS Capital Campaign Committee, said. “Their generosity will help us bring this project to completion. I get choked up every time I think about it.”

The $4 million Sports Complex at University High School will be named the first on-campus high school baseball and softball facility in Monongalia County. Efforts are underway to finish raising the remaining funds needed to complete the project after which bids for the final design and construction will be solicited.

The Mills Group has designed the mock-ups for the sports complex, viewable at UHSSportsComplex.com. Ryan Hess, the architect working on the complex, is a University graduate.

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