UC Santa Cruz will soon get its first permanent scoreboard for the outdoor playing field
At five feet wide and 2.5 feet tall, the portable scoreboard that spectators have used for the past two decades to keep up with the points scored and time remaining of soccer games on UC Santa Cruz’s Lower East Field is out dated at best, requiring excellent eye sight or strategic seating to be of any use at all. But with the help of a generous donation, that’s all about to change.
Wells Fargo Bank is donating a $15,000, solar-powered, 5.5 by 16 foot scoreboard to UCSC, the first permanent outdoor playing field scoreboard in campus history. It will be installed on the four-acre Lower East Field.
This project is good news for the sports groups that utilize the field, which include: rugby, Ultimate Frisbee, and various other intramural teams, as well as the men’s and women’s soccer teams and the 300-plus spectators the soccer teams draw to the field, who have struggled for the past two decades to read off of a small, portable board.
“The small, portable scoreboard is positioned directly across the field from where the guests sit, but it’s not ideal,” Ryan Andrews, UCSC’s executive director of Student Engagement, said of the current board on UCSC’s website, news.ucsc.edu. “You’ve got to have pretty good eyes. It just doesn’t feel right.”
The new scoreboard, which is designed for optimal visibility, will sit seven feet in the air on a post, and will be seven times the size of the current generator operated scoreboard which must be hauled out to the field before matches with a long extension cord trailing behind to the power source.
“This scoreboard is going to enhance the experience for players as well as spectators at the Lower East Field,” Kathleen Hughes, UCSC’s director of development, said on news.ucsc.edu. “The fact that it’s solar-powered is an additional boon for the campus. This fits right in with all the eco-friendly building, retrofitting and carbon-reducing projects we’re seeing on campus right now.”
Wells Fargo representative Michelle Bassi learned of the scoreboard situation during a tour of the campus, following Wells Fargo’s co-sponsorship with Bank of America, Bank of the West, Comcast and other businesses and private sponsors of UCSC’s annual Scholarship Benefit Dinner.
Bassi worked with other Wells Fargo representatives, including Jeff Oellerich, vice president and community banking district manager, and Senior Vice President/Regional Marketing Director Alec Hughes, who visited the site and then approved the donation.
The scoreboard’s installation is scheduled for late this summer, just in time for the next soccer season, which begins in August.