NEW CONCORD, Ohio — Muskingum University is in rare company when it comes to Division-III colleges and universities in Ohio.
On Sunday afternoon the Muskies officially opened their North Athletic Turf Field– the second turf field on campus– the other, of course, being McConagha Stadium. Muskingum is now one of only two Division-III schools in Ohio with two turf fields; the other being Ohio Northern.
The new field will host both men’s and women’s soccer and lacrosse games, as well as intramural sports and other activities. The baseball and softball teams will also be able to use the field when it rains due to it’s state-of-the-art drainage system. Athletic Director Larry Shank says “it helps everybody.”
“We were so congested with the one field, with all the sports and hosting the high school, everything was just so congested and our kids were not getting the full benefits of practice because we had limited time and everything, so this is a dream,” explained Shank.
While the Muskies women’s soccer team opened the venue today for their Parents Day match-up versus Chatham, there is still work to be done on the venue. Shank says they will add lights, stands, a press box, and a scoreboard with video capabilities.
“You have to have facilities. Kids are coming from tremendous high school facilities, when they go to college their comparing college facilities with what they’re coming out of. This just promotes us, moves us up into the forefront because I think the only other Division-III school that has two turfs in the state is Ohio Northern. And it just does so much for us,” Shank added.
Shank says while the venue certainly enhances the athletic department, more importantly, it enhances the experience at Muskingum for all students with the opportunity it provides the school to create more activities to offer it’s student-body.
“It’s going to be a first class facility when it’s done, and you can already see the start of it,” Shank smiled.
For more information about the multi-purpose venue or about Muskingum University athletics you can visit their website fightingmuskies.com,