Memorial Field after dark.
Memorial Field after dark.
Ellory Potter

Benefits and Difficulties of Memorial Field

Pros and Cons of Having Football Games at Memorial Field And The Effect On Other Teams

Memorial Field is a staple athletic complex that is a well known landmark in State College, where State High sports like football and field hockey, sports in the community, and other events like graduation are held. Even though the flashy stadium is in the heart of the town, and it has been since the 1900’s, State High and the State High Little Lion’s football practice field are a quick drive, or a long walk to the games. 

This brought up the question: should the State High football field be closer to State High itself?

I feel that it should be moved closer to the State High campus.

But of course, there are benefits to having games at Memorial Field.

“It’s a little self-contained, probably easier to maintain in some ways. I think the benefit is nostalgia and history.  I think there are so many State High football, soccer, lacrosse, field hockey players that have played there for decades,” Assistant Athletic Director Loren Crispell said. 

On the other hand, there are also difficulties that arise from games at Memorial Field.

“If it rains, it could flood, it has flooded before,” Crispell said. “The other challenge is just to get teams down there. The other challenge is you have busy streets surrounding the perimeter of your facility, so you have to shut those down on game day.” 

The parking around the stadium is limited, so only some of the guests can park there.

“We just have to properly prioritize who needs those parking spots. You do have to give priority parking to the officials. It’s really central personnel that need to be close,” Crispell said.

While there are both pros and cons to Memorial Field, many have strong feelings about the field.

“It’s the only place I’ve ever known.  I think it now become a very modern facility,” says Crispell. 

 How does the field hockey team feel about playing at such a large stadium?

“I love the large stadium feel while playing.  It is a beautiful field for our sport, and we are so grateful that we are one of 2 teams that has an honor to be on this field,” Junior field hockey player, Ella Tambroni said.

The field hockey team also has to travel to their games, and not just when they are away, would players on the team rather play closer to State High? 

I definitely think that having a field closer to the school would be awesome. We love Memorial Field because of the actual turf, but the distance is sometimes an issue,” Tambroni says.

Memorial Field is mainly looked at by the community as the State High football field, how does the field hockey team feel about Memorial Field not being looked at as the field hockey field too? 

“I think it’s tough knowing that it is mainly for football, when we play equally or even more games and practices on this field,” Tambroni says, “I think it is a football stadium, so it is given to football. It would awesome if it was equally named!” 

How do the field hockey players feel about not having the field hockey field as close to State High? 

“It’s tricky managing travel, for the underclassmen. We were finally able to have a shuttle that takes anyone needed to the field right after school,” Tambroni says, “I sometimes wish we were able to play on South Track, because the turf is beautiful, and it is right across from the school.” 

After talking with some people associated with Memorial Field, the answer was obvious to me, I feel like the football team and field hockey team should not play at the same field. These two sports need two different types of fields. Football should be played and practice at the field where they will play their home games, so when it comes to game time they know how the field will feel. On the other hand, field hockey needs a field that has good turf due to them needing to be able to move the ball around the field, and it would be challenging for them to do so in thicker turf.

This would allow field hockey to take over South Track in the Fall because Track & Field is not currently in season, so they would not have to share the field. The only difficulty with this would be that the football team is larger than field hockey, and because of this, they would have to get more shuttles for the team. The football team could also have less players on their roster so they would not need to have as many shuttles. This way the State High football fans can keep their tradition, and the team can still play in the wonderful stadium. The field hockey team also would be happy because they will have their own field with great turf, that is much closer to State High. 

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