Davies Gym

 

Originally known as simply the Men's Gymnasium, Davies Gym has been the home of Saluki athletics for over seventy years.

Built in 1925 with a $170,000 price tag, the gymnasium served as the home of Southern's men's and women's indoor sports programs until the men moved into the SIU Arena in 1964.

Longtime chairman of the SIU physical education department for women, Dorothy Davies, retired in 1974, and since then the facility has been known as Davies Gym.

With the growing success of the women's program in the 1970s and early '80s, renovation of the gym was undertaken and completed in 1982 thanks to a $3.35 million allocation by then-governor Jim Thompson.

The "new" gym was able to seat 1,250 fans anxious to watch their Saluki women's volleyball and basketball teams in action. On September 5, 1982, those fans were able to see the Saluki volleyball team win its first match in the renovated gymnasium over state rival Illinois, 15-8, 8-15, 15-13, 15-7.

The first sellout crowd for a women's basketball game at SIUC took place on March 1, 1986 when an overflow crowd of 1,503 packed Davies to watch the Salukis edge Drake 49-47, securing SIUC's first ever Gateway Conference crown and NCAA Tournament bid.

With the move of the women's basketball team to the SIU Arena in 1987-88, volleyball is the only varsity sport still played at Davies.

Over the years, Davies has provided a hostile environment for opposing teams. During the 2000s at home, Saluki volleyball compiled a 60-68 mark (.469). The 1998 squad set a school record for most wins in a season at home with 12 and matched the 1995 team's school record of seven conference victories at Davies the same year.