A comprehensive project this summer is set to revamp Miller Athletic Complex at Grace College, Winona Lake, Ind., transforming the soccer complex to install lights, bleachers, team bench areas, and a press box among other improvements.
A donor has pledged $350,000 anonymously to fund the soccer field improvements. Construction will be ongoing throughout the spring and summer and is scheduled to be completed by the start of the fall 2014 soccer season.
“These improvements to Miller Athletic Complex are a part of the college’s strategic plan to serve the needs of the entire Grace community,” said Grace President Dr. Bill Katip. “We’re creating valuable facility enhancements that will meet the needs for campus and varsity athletics and also attract members of the Grace community and prospective students. We cannot thank the donor enough for the commitment and passion to the continued growth and success of Grace College & Seminary.”
New lights installed at the soccer field will allow Grace men’s and women’s soccer games to be played at night for the first time. The teams will also enjoy upgraded team bench areas and a team meeting room at the field.
The soccer field itself will undergo a makeover with the pitch to be widened. The soccer complex will add 1,000 new bleacher seats, meeting the capacity requirement to host NAIA Opening Round matches.
Other upgrades to the soccer complex include a new scoreboard, fencing around the perimeter of the complex and a press box complete with wireless Internet to enable live video streaming of home matches.
The groundbreaking ceremony, held at the soccer fields, took place on Friday.
“We are very excited and thank the Lord for this gift that will enhance the soccer facility at Miller Athletic Complex,” said Grace Athletic Director Chad Briscoe. “We are humbled by the support from the donor who made this project a reality for our student-athletes, coaches, campus and community. This project will continue to impact the overall growth of the Miller Athletic Complex and make it an important part of campus life for the entire Grace community.”
According to Drew Flamm, Vice President for Advancement, the donor is an avid supporter of Grace College and the athletic programs. “We praise God for this gift. The family that made this gift loves Grace College and Grace College Athletics,” Flamm said. “They have invested their time, talent, and treasure to make the athletic program and our whole institution better. We have big plans for Grace College and Seminary, and so do our donors. We pray this is the one of many transformational gifts that makes a lifelong impact on students.”
Grace’s men’s soccer head coach Matt Hotchkin added: “We are extremely excited about this project. This is a huge deal for Grace soccer and Grace College. This will deepen the relationship with Grace and the community and will help us recruit the best of the best to Grace. Speaking for all of our former coaches and players, we are humbled with this great gift and are excited with how God will use this stadium to further His kingdom.”
Grace’s women’s soccer head coach Michael Voss remarked: “This is absolutely fantastic! I am super stoked for this renovation of our facility. The ceiling of possession-attacking futbol has been raised immeasurably. This positions Grace to host amazing matches and to exponentially increase the ability to live out our mission of loving God and being a baller. This is a fantastic time to be a Lancer!”