Construction continues at Taylor Field


Photo provided.

An artist’s rendering shows what the new turf and track, done by ATG Sports Industries, will look like when finished.

Drew Hawkins, Staff Writer

Taylor Field is getting some of the biggest renovations of an HHS sports facility since the installation of artificial turf on Jay Thompson Field. 

Artificial turf is a synthetic grass that was made for making the upkeep of the grass itself easier and making sports surfaces easier to play on and more consistent. 

The football field is currently undergoing demolition first on the top layer of dirt. Once the top layer is reduced, they will slowly work on the installation of artificial turf. The football field along with the track is expected to be done around June. 

Not only will the football field host home football games but also boys and girls soccer matches.

The field house is currently under construction but is not expected to be done anytime soon. According to Coach Greg Langley, the school is hoping it will be done around August. 

Coach Matt Griffith, the head coach of the varsity football team, believes the artificial turf is good overall. 

“I’m excited that the district is investing money into this,” Griffith said. ”It will hopefully get the community excited about the football games and bring in some more fans.”

Since the exact date of the project’s completion is unknown, Griffith feels it will be no setback for the team.

“If the new facilities are installed, we will be on them,” Griffith said. “If not, we will do [summer practice] on the cow pasture and work out in the old weight room like we’ve always done it. We will adapt and overcome.”

Turf will definitely require some adjustments. 

“I like a natural grass field,” Griffith said, “but I’m excited about not having to worry about the problems of having natural grass.”

New technologies are also going to be added that will not only benefit the football team, but also other athletic programs of the high school. 

“The fieldhouse will have a dressing room on both ends, a concession stand, a weight room, a coach’s office, (and) a dressing area for officials. There will (also) be a golf simulator for the golf teams and a small athletic training room,” Athletic Director Greg Langley said. 

The golf team currently has only has the Shawnee Hills Golf Course to practice on. With the school adding a simulator, it means that Bulldog golfers will be able to practice year round. 

Right now though, the construction on the field is making practice difficult for the track and field team. 

“We have to adapt and overcome,” Griffith said once more. “Not having a track seems trivial especially with working on handoffs and turns, but our hurdle runners have not been able to work on hurdles for the length of a race. Long jump, triple jump, and pole vault have not been able to practice like they’ve wanted to.”

In the long run, the hope is that the construction will positively benefit all sports teams. 

“I think any time you have top notch facilities, it will go a long way in helping all athletic programs,” Langley said.