An Update on the Renovated Athletic Fields


Photo by James Miranda/

Pace Stadium will be reserved for football, women’s soccer, and lacrosse.

James Miranda, Sports Editor

When Pace started the renovation of its athletic fields in October of 2014, it was made known that Pace would provide its students and athletes with state-of-the-art fields for athletic and recreational use.

As of now, renovations are not complete, per se. The two fields, Pace Stadium (football) and Finnerty Field (baseball), are done and game-ready, but other auxiliary renovations are still being built, such as the extension building to the Ianniello Field House. Despite the construction, the fields are being utilized for practices already.

What’s new with the fields? Pace’s shining result, which is only a part of the $100 million Master Plan, has a refreshed and full turf treatment. Mammoth game lights encompass the fields, so that games and activities can be held in the evening. A new building next to the parking lot extends from the Ianniello Field House, and bigger bleachers fitted with a full press box hug the sideline.

“The fields themselves are done, but the surrounding area still needs work,” said Mike Winn, Associate Athletic Director for Facilities and Operations. “Right now, we’ve completed enough to get athletes on and off the fields safely.”

Both fields were redone with top-of-the-line turf.

Turf plays differently than natural grass, as seen in professional and college sports. It carries the stigmas of supposedly hurting knees and getting very slippery when wet.

“We’re in the Northeast and the college seasons are very different than high school or youth seasons where we need to play games through February to April,” Winn said. “We went with FieldTurf, which is probably one of the top turf companies out there. They supply a lot of the turf fields for the NFL.”

Winn, who is also the head coach for women’s soccer, confirmed that everything should be completed by mid-November. His team was also the first to test out Pace Stadium’s new playing conditions in their 3-0 win over Queens College Thu., Sept. 3.

Pace Stadium will be used exclusively for football, women’s soccer, and lacrosse, while Finnerty Field will be reserved for baseball and field hockey, according to Winn.

The Old Ianniello Field house is still standing and being used, but with the closing of most of the Briarcliff campus’s buildings, a new version of the field house is being built alongside the end zone where the Miller and Lienhard Halls parking lot is located.

“Basically, the Ianniello Field House is replacing the athletic facilities that were in Briarcliff,” Winn said. “It’ll serve as a locker room for football, women’s soccer, and women’s lacrosse. It’ll have an athletic training room, equipment room, multipurpose VIP room, and then it’ll have a strength and conditioning room for the varsity athletes.”

The new Ianniello Field House is expected to be completed between November first and mid-November, and is up to date on its construction, according to Winn.

While practices are permitted, so far there are some restrictions regarding the bleachers, the area where the new field house will be, and the area around home plate on the baseball field.

The fields, however, are not solely for Pace athletics’ use.

“With the turf fields, not only can we offer them for our varsity teams, but we can really expand out intramurals program,” Winn said.

Rules for the fields are being drawn up by athletics in collaboration with Student Development and Campus Activities (SDCA). They will be set within the coming weeks.

For Athletics, the only other renovation to come is the construction of the new softball field, which will be behind Dyson Hall. Construction of the field will start within a week or two, according to Winn. Winn also confirmed that the softball field will be natural grass.

Setters Football will open their season against Ave Maria University on Sat., Sep. 5 in their new digs, Pace Stadium, at noon.