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Expanding with McBride
Clubhouse bringing baseball academy on site
031912 BIZ CLUB HOUSE web
With signs of construction in the background, Nacharvius Byrd takes some practice swings in the batting cage at Hackers Monday.

Former Atlanta Braves pitcher, Macay McBride, will be relocating the Macay McBride Sports Academy to The Clubhouse in Statesboro this April. The academy is a full service baseball and softball school offering lessons, cage rentals, workouts and team practices.
    To accommodate the academy, owners of The Clubhouse are adding three additional batting cages to the six already there, four bullpen mounds, and an infield to their existing 30 acre golf and entertainment complex.
    “The whole idea behind the Clubhouse and Hackers complex is recreation that is just plain fun in addition to recreation at a higher, competitive level,” said Darin Van Tassell, co-owner of The Clubhouse at Hackers. “In addition to miniature golf, we offer golf lessons. We offer bowling lessons, and now we will have a facility that will allow for baseball and softball instruction. It fits into our overall mission very nicely. Macay was that missing piece of the puzzle.”
    By moving McBride’s academy from its current indoor location on Zetterower Road to the new, larger facility at The Clubhouse designed specifically for the academy, McBride hopes to continue to grow the school by reaching out to more players of all ages and levels of expertise.
    “The Clubhouse is building a first class facility that we’re very excited about,” McBride said. “For us, the kids come first. We charge reasonable rates so that everyone who wants to learn can afford it. We know that Tony Ross and Darin Van Tassell are great people who understand what we’re trying to do, which is to provide the young people of our community a unique opportunity to excel in a sport with the help of professional training. We are here to assist aspiring athletes in reaching their full potential, with the ultimate goal of garnering the attention of college and professional athletic scouts.”
    McBride, a former standout pitcher at Screven County High School, has pitched for both the Atlanta Braves and Detroit Tigers. When injuries put his professional career on hold, he remained in the game by creating the academy.
    One of McBride's students is the son of Tony Ross, co-owner of the Clubhouse complex.
    "One day Tony and I began talking, and we both felt moving my operation to a permanent location at the Clubhouse made a lot of sense," McBride said. "The infrastructure that was already in place was perfect to build upon. It's just a great fit."
    In addition to training at the new facility, McBride is forming youth travel teams that will train at the complex.
    “We will also offer private lessons, day clinics, and multi-day camps for baseball and softball,” he said. “Also, for players who would like to have a first class facility in which to train on a regular basis, memberships are also available."
    The Clubhouse opened in October 2010 as an addition to Hacker’s Golf Park on Old Register Road in Statesboro. The 30-acre sports and entertainment complex includes a 42,000-square-foot indoor facility, which features 24 lanes of bowling. It also includes an arcade, mini bowling, laser tag arena, and Ballocity Indoor Playground. Other features include a championship mini golf course, practice range, batting cages, and full service pro shop.
    Van Tassell said plans are in the works for the continued expansion of the entertainment and sports complex.
    "We are always looking forward and planning for the future," he said. "We don't have anything specific right now, not in the immediate future. But, we are looking and exploring different outdoor recreational opportunities. I am very excited about the (academy). This particular addition will allow kids to train very efficiently all year round."
    To learn more about the Macay McBride Sports Academy, visit their Facebook page.