Sweeney Field Re-Surfacing Underway
BOSTON, Mass. – When Myles Elliott '28 and Eugenia L. Sweeney Field opened in August of 1996 it not only gave the Wentworth men's soccer and softball teams a home field to call their own, but it also extended the front door of the Institute's campus across Ruggles Street, to an area that contained a parking lot, a small patch of grass, and a landing area for helicopters bringing patients to the Longwood Medical Area.
Given that Wentworth now had a facility to call its own; it was only natural that the number of varsity sports using the field would increase. In the spring of 2007 the men's lacrosse team made its varsity debut, followed by women's soccer that fall. Women's lacrosse, which will be elevated to varsity status next year, has played a handful of club games on Sweeney Field over the last two seasons.
Throughout the years, there have been many enhancements to the facility, including the addition of two team rooms, a three-level press box, and higher perimeter fencing. However, after 16 years and 607 Wentworth varsity games on the AstroTurf surface, Sweeney Field is about to get a major makeover. Beginning today (May 14) and lasting throughout the summer, the facility's surface will be torn up as well as making repairs to the sub-surface and drainage system. Additionally, repairs will be made to the fence that surrounds the playing field.
When the project is complete, Sweeney Field's playing surface will shift from its present AstroTurf to FieldTurf, which is more conducive to soccer, lacrosse, and softball. The model of turf being installed is FieldTurf Prestige XM 57P-40 (Duraspine), which is an infill turf product, with a minimum of a 2.25 inch pile height and a minimum fiber weight of 40 ounces. The entire field – including the softball field – will be a natural green color. Additionally, the softball bases will no longer be set in dirt cutouts.
Three different companies are working on this project. CDMSmith was selected as the landscape architect company and is handling the specifications, design, and overall project management. R.A.D. Sports is serving as the site preparation contractor and will handle the removal of the existing turf and prepare the base surface for the installation of the new turf. R.A.D. Sports has ties to Wentworth as Robert M. Delmonico '91 is the company's president, and Nathan A. Collins '01 is the project manager. Finally, the new surface will be installed by Northeast Turf of Portland, Maine.
Over the course of the last 16 years the Leopards have combined to post a 324-274-9 record on Sweeney Field, with men's and women's soccer combining to win over 68 percent of their games on the field (180-80-9). Wentworth's postseason record on Sweeney Field is an impressive 21-2, including the men's soccer team winning both the 1996 Commonwealth Coast Conference Championship and the 2009 ECAC Division III New England Championship on its home turf.
The first game ever played on Sweeney Field was on September 11, 1996, when the Leopard men's soccer team dropped a 4-3 overtime decision to UMass Dartmouth. The final game on the original surface was played on April 21, 2012, when the men's lacrosse team lost, 11-6, to Roger Williams.
Both the men's and women's soccer teams will begin practicing on the new surface on Saturday, August 18, with the women's soccer team playing its first game of the 2012 campaign on Friday, August 31, against Clark. There are plans to hold a field re-dedication ceremony on Saturday, September 8, in between the men's soccer team's game against MIT (Noon) and the women's soccer team's game against New England College (3:00).
Periodic updates will be posted on this site as well as pictures from the project, which can be found here.