Pacific University’s baseball field, Chuck Bafaro Stadium, which is city owned by Forest Grove, is set to receive brand new turf specifically for the infield.
After many rain outs last season, an anonymous donor and Pacific University made the decision to reduce the amount of missed games and classes with the decision to have Field Turf, a Tarkett Sports Company install brand new turf for the 2018 season.
“We decided last year, which was really bad weather wise, we had some games where we had to move them over to our official turf facility in Hillsboro at Hops stadium which is Ron Tonkin Field, “Athletic Director Ken Schumann said. “We started to take a look at what we might be able to do to ensure we are able to practice and play games on our home field more often to keep everybody in class and to allow us to play in front of our home fans.”
While the university has a well manufactured facility, Schumann noted that many of the other programs in the Northwest Conference (NWC) in baseball have gone to field turf either for the entire field, infield or outfield. Being in Oregon, rain delays become more common each season and limiting the chances of that helps keep kids in class and more games played at Pacific.
The turf will come from the same provider (Tarkett Sports Company) as the recently added turf field for Hanson Stadium, which was also a donation given to Pacific to make the upgrade possible. The donors for the upgrade to Chuck Bafaro stadium remained anonymous, but the donation took place when they felt that it would benefit the university.
“Once the donors felt comfortable it was going to be a really good project that would benefit the university and student athletes, we were able to start the project,” Schumann said. “In any situation, a donor wants to know the project is going to be one that is going to benefit the institution and student athletes. Their support is going to go towards a worthy, good cause.”
The renovation for the turf field cost approximately around $325,000 according to Schumann. As far as any more upgrades to the stadium, there does not seem to be any needed.
“Stadium is in great shape as we just built it ten years ago. I really think it is one of the finer division three stadiums in the country for baseball.” Schumann said. “This project was more for the field, as opposed to the stadium. The specific goal of this project was to allow us to play all of our games here at home, so we do not have to send our student athletes somewhere else to play which results in more missed class time and in a lot of cases, we have to pay rent so it is also cost savings in the long run for us.”
The renovation is set to begin and be ready for the 2018 baseball season.