The installation of a new lighting system on the soccer and lacrosse fields offers a great experience for teams and spectators. A brief dedication ceremony for the new lights is planned for 6:45 p.m. on October 21, between the women’s and men’s soccer games as the teams take on SCAC opponent Hendrix College at 5 and 7 p.m. respectively.
The “Celebration of the Lights” will be an opportunity for members of the men and women soccer teams to thank parents and friends for their support and dedication to their programs.
“We’re really excited and we hope that the members of the men and women’s soccer teams will take the opportunity to really show and thank our fans and supporter for being a part of our program,” Head Women’s Soccer Coach Jene Baclawski said.
Students, parents, and all other fans will now have the opportunity to cheer on the Pirate soccer and lacrosse teams when the sun goes down. Baclawski attests to the value of the lights as a means of raising the standards of competition at Southwestern.
“We now have the opportunity to play games at night at a real college venue where we’ll be able to have more fans and support from the community on and off campus,” Baclawski said. “I think that having a field with lights just brings a new level of excitement for the players and the program as a whole.”
Having a lighted field will also help with coordinating student-athletes schedules with practices and games in order to reduce conflicts with classes and studying.
“Having lights is going to enable us to use the venue at different times of day than we’ve ever been able to use and avoid conflicts with labs and classes, and I think that’s going to make a real difference in terms of the players on the tame,” Baclawski said.
The instillation of the lights was made possible by a generous donation from unnamed alumni.
“The donation we received to build the lights was really a surprise,” said. “We don’t be recognizing the donors who provided the funds for the lights because Baclawski they have asked to remain anonymous.”
Along with the insertion fo lights on the field, additional fundraising from the development office has provided fro lighting the walkway to the competition field as well as the lower parking lot adjacent to the walkway.
“We also installed highoptic cables within the lines that go underneath the lights so that we will be able to have clearer wireless and faster Internet pictures for the video streaming of our games,” Baclawski said.
Coaches and administrators were pleased with the speedy installment of the lights.
“I was really surprised that we were able to exceed the deadline for the instillation,” Baclawski said. “We were expecting them to go up in mid or late OCtober so the fact that they were in at the end of October was fantastic.”
Coach Baclawski and all of the coaches, athletes, and fans are thrilled with the new opportunities having a lighted field has illuminated.
“Its like true Friday night lights style football in Texas,” Baclawski said, “so I’m very pleased and very grateful for the opportunity we have to get the fields lighted!”