Ribbon-cutting ceremony set for Sept. 4

When Keuka College’s student-athletes arrive for practice, they will lace up their cleats and step on to a bright green field, marked with crisp white, gold, and black lines.

The teams will be among the first to play on the college’s new synthetic turf field.

Construction on the new facility began in May, and completion was expected in time for the fall 2015 sports season.

The field, part of the Jephson Community Athletic Complex, features a grey border to outline the playing surface and the signature Keuka College ‘KC’ inlaid at midfield.

A ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held Friday, Sept. 4 to mark the grand opening of the turf field. The ceremony begins at 7 p.m. and is free and open to the public.

Following the ceremony, the men’s soccer team take on the Pitt-Bradford Panthers in the Wolfpack’s first game of the 2015-16 season.

In addition to the men’s soccer team, the turf field will be used by the college’s women’s soccer squad, men’s and women’s lacrosse teams, and the new field hockey team, whose first home game is Sunday, Sept. 6 at 1 p.m. vs. Ramapo (N.J.) College.

The addition of the turf field is just one part of the college’s on-going long-range strategic plan (LRSP), and will enhance the experience of the college’s student-athletes while helping with enrollment and retention.

It also will attract more students to campus by increasing the number of sports offered. The debut of the field hockey team this fall, the 19th sport offered at Keuka, would not be possible without a turf field, said Director of Athletic Dave Sweet.

“Varsity athletics and intramurals play such a big role in our students’ out-of-classroom experience that it has been recognized by the president and our Board of Trustees, so much so that it became part of our strategic plan,” he said.

According to College President Jorge L. Díaz-Herrera, the turf field will help strengthen the caliber of student-athletes we are able to attract to Keuka College. “The new turf field will also help retain existing student-athletes as we strive to provide them with the best on-campus experience,” he added.

Sweet said that unlike some turf fields, the new Keuka College turf field can be plowed during the winter for snow removal, a feature that will grant student-athletes earlier access to outdoor practice facilities leading up to the start of the spring sports season. The field will also boast an enhanced sound system, elevated spectator seating, a full-perimeter fence, a shot clock for lacrosse games, and a paved walkway for access to the field. Additionally, the College’s intramurals program will make use of the turf field, and Sweet said there is the possibility that Penn Yan Academy—which allowed Keuka to use its turf field over the years—will have access to the new field as well.

For photos of the construction, visit kcwolfpack.com/turf.