ALTON – The West Elementary Gymnasium received a new name Thursday in honor of a longtime Alton teacher and coach - Stan McAfoos.

The school district named the gym in memory of McAfoos after receiving unanimous approval from the Alton Board of Education.

A small dedication ceremony took place Thursday in the West Gym at 1513 State Street in Alton.

Alton School District 11 Superintendent Kristie Baumgartner said that dedicating the West Gym after McAfoos is very fitting.

“When you consider the amazing career of Coach McAfoos, both in the classroom and on the court, it’s wonderful to have this gym, where he spent countless hours, named in his honor," she said.

She continued: "The West Gym is the former location of Alton High basketball practices and games where McAfoos spent so much of his coaching career," Alton Superintendent Baumgartner said. "Stan played basketball for Alton High from 1958 to 1960. He was then a teacher for over 30 years at the school and served as athletic director for 14 years. Over his 17 years as the Alton High Head Boys Basketball Coach, he amassed a number of significant accolades and benchmarks including being the winningest boys’ basketball coach in Alton High history.

"His teams won six regional titles (1978, 1980, 1983, 1985, 1988, and 1989). He was also the Illinois Basketball Coaches Association’s Coach of the Year in 1979 boasting a team record that year of 23-3. McAfoos was also inducted into the Alton High Wall of Fame in 2013."

Alton School Board President David Fritz said when the board was asked to consider naming the gym after McAfoos some months back, it thought it was a good idea and it when voted on, it received unanimous support.

Fritz added: “It is very fitting we recognize Stan McAfoos, the student educator/mentor/coach at Alton Senior High with naming the West Gym after him. “He won 290 games at Alton High as the head basketball coach, six regional titles, and several of his players played at Division I schools.”

Fritz praised McAfoos for his work with students as a coach and mentor and said his legacy will live on for years ahead.

Some of McAfoos' former basketball players were in attendance Thursday, along with family.

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