University celebrates opening of new soccer field

George Fox dedicated its new NCAA Soccer Field, part of the planned new Austin Sports Complex, with a pair of intercollegiate soccer games Sept. 2.

President Robin Baker presented a brief program to honor those who worked to make the complex a reality. Between the men’s and women’s inaugural games on the field, he recognized the project’s key stakeholders – including general contractor The Saunders Company and primary donors, among them Ken and Joan Austin and Brad and Katharine Stoffer – and the university’s soccer teams and coaches.

The event celebrated a significant threshold in a project eight years in the making. In 2002, the Austins, founders of the A-dec dental manufacturing company, pledged 23 acres of land on the corner of Crestview and Villa roads for the expansion of George Fox athletics. The project received another significant boost in July of 2009 with the announcement of a $1.2 million lead gift from the Stoffers and their Boedecker Foundation.

Since then, a $250,000 matching grant donated by an anonymous Newberg family in October of 2009 and a $300,000 donation from Pacific Fibre Products of Vancouver, Wash., this spring helped boost the project’s fundraising total to nearly $2.1 million. Fundraising continues for the complex, projected to cost $6.5 million.

Once completed, the Austin Sports Complex will include a multi-use synthetic turf field, the synthetic turf soccer field, an athletic center building, three grass fields, and a walking/jogging path. Visit our Development site to donate to the project or to learn more.

Competition on the field began with the George Fox men’s Division III soccer game against the Oregon Institute of Technology, which OIT won 3-0, followed by the women’s Division III soccer contest against Northwest University, a 0-0 tie. Join us soon for upcoming men’s and women’s games on the new field.