ISU soccer set to host first-ever night game

Archive Photo: ISU soccer will host it's first-ever night game against Idaho.

The Illinois State University Soccer program has reached record-breaking success in recent years. That success has brought forth numerous upgrades to their facilities and stadium. Six brand new light structures now surround Adelaide Street Field, and for the first time in school history, ISU will be able to play under the lights in front of their fans.

ISU will host Idaho in its first ever night match Oct. 30 at 7 p.m. Head coach Drew Roff believes that later game times will provide more energy and motivation to the team.

“Lights will benefit our program in several different ways,” Roff told Redbird Magazine. “It will enhance the experience for our student-athletes to be able to play at night. Night games just tend to have more electricity in the air. Our players can get done with class, have some down time and prepare for the match.”

Along with an enhanced feel to the game, night games will also welcome larger and possibly record breaking crowds. A 7 p.m. time slot versus a 4 p.m. or 1 p.m. time slot allows students to attend games after class, also allowing people to travel from work to Adelaide.

Perhaps one of the most important results from the newly installed lights is that ISU is now eligible to host the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament. ISU will host the MVC Tournament Semi-Finals and Finals Nov. 7 through Nov. 9, respectively. The Redbirds have won the last three tournaments consecutively and have won five MVC titles overall.

As time has progressed for the ISU soccer program, their success has brought major upgrades to their facilities.

"Getting lights and having a great natural grass field, box goals, bench covers and a scoreboard over the past eight years; this has turned into a pretty special place for us,” Roff told Redbird Magazine. “The commitment by our administration and university to continue to provide us with the resources we need to be a premier program is very exciting.”

As the upgrades keep coming, ISU continues to deliver on the field. Last Sunday, the Redbirds clinched the MVC Regular Season Title with a 4-0 win over Indiana State and on Saturday defeated Drake 2-0 to complete a perfect 6-0 MVC record.

“Slowly but surely we have turned Adelaide Street Field into a great park,” Roff told Redbird Magazine. “We want to be able to say we have the best home-field experience in the Missouri Valley.”

It will be a sight to behold when the lights come on for the first time in program history. The Redbirds home attendance record is 1,085. ISU hopes to break that when they make history under the lights at 7 p.m. Thursday against Idaho, at Adelaide Street Field.

Fast Facts:

- First night match in school history

- Free sunglasses to the first 150 fans

- Players will throw ISU soccer scarves into the crowd after introductions

- Redbirds are on a five-game winning streak, won the MVC with a perfect 6-0 record

- Last regular season game before MVC Tournament

- Tickets can be found at GoRedbirds.com/tickets

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