Soccer field

Brockton Boys & Girls Club features synthetic turf soccer field

BROCKTON – The pronation of the crampons digging into the natural grass, the soles of the feet glued to the grass, as if each foot is rising from a foam mattress.

This feel is familiar to most soccer players playing on grass, but synthetic turf, while not as comfortable as it feels, is more durable and requires less maintenance, regardless of the weather or conditions. the amount of use.

“I totally agree,” said Brockton FC United captain Rudney Delgado of the idea of ​​creating an artificial turf pitch at Brockton.

If the Boys & Girls Club of Metro South (BGCMS), located in Brockton, has its way, it just might be.

The club is looking to expand onto the Eldon B. Keith field, creating an outdoor artificial turf football pitch for club patrons and students at Brockton Public Schools.

The expansion would also include the construction of a new lodge on the Eldon B. Keith Field property.

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The land would be built by the Boys & Girls Club and then turned over to Brockton Public Schools, becoming the property of Brockton Public Schools for their athletic teams.

Brockton Public Schools would be responsible for maintaining the grounds of this deal should it come to fruition, with BGCMS also having the option of using the grounds for its youth programs.

“It would be good for the kids,” said Delgado, who grew up in Brockton playing for the youth leagues on turf and turf.

Rudney Delgado of Brockton FC, right, practices at Randolph High School on Tuesday December 8, 2020.

Delgado said that although he thinks football is best played on grass, due to the New England weather, a grass field is easier to maintain.

Monica Lombardo, vice president and director of advancement for the Boys and Girls Club of Metro South, said the demand for more football pitches in Brockton was part of what prompted the idea of ​​a football pitch. in grass.

The city received a grant in 2019 to build an adult-sized soccer field at O’Donnell Stadium, but the number of dedicated youth pitches is lacking, according to Nolan Napier, president of Brockton Youth Soccer.

“A grass pitch is a no-brainer,” said Napier, who as a member of the Brockton Youth Soccer Association has struggled to get his youth teams to play on grass pitches that lack the maintenance to play. all year.

Napier is hopeful that the turf field will be built and will accept inexpensive rentals for use in the field for his organization.

When a call for tenders is issued, the entities will have 30 days to respond with their proposal to use the land and submit their offer for the purchase of the property. located at the back of the Boys and Girls Club of Metro South clubhouse, accessible from West Elm Street.

Eldon B. Keith was a longtime member of the Brockton School committee in the early 1900s who served in World War I and died in 1919 while on a US government mission in London. The land was donated to the town by Keith’s father George in 1921 with the intention that it be turned into a sports field and used for entertainment purposes.

This plaque marks the Eldon B. Keith field on Warren Avenue, Brockton, seen here on April 17, 2021.

In years past, it has been used as a venue for local baseball and football games.

If he gets the DP, the Boys and Girls Club will hope the football pitch and clubhouse will be built by 2023 if they get control of the site, according to Lombardo. The club has donors in place for potential funding for these extensions if they are approved.

The PD is expected to be discussed further at a Brockton School committee meeting on May 4.

Enterprise staff writer Darvence Chery can be reached at [email protected]. Support local journalism by purchasing a digital or print subscription to The Enterprise today.