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New Southern Columbia Turf Field Ready in Time

FRANKLIN TOWNSHIP -- After some uncertainty earlier this week, the new turf field at Southern Columbia High School is ready for some football.

Southern Columbia High School has a new turf football field this season but school officials did not know if it would be ready for Friday night's big game against Mount Carmel Area. In fact, the decision to play the game wasn't made until Thursday night.

The Southern Columbia Tigers and Mount Carmel Area Red Tornadoes have one of the biggest rivalries in high school football here in our area. Friday night's big match up is a home game for the Tigers but officials at Southern Columbia weren't even sure the kids could play here.

It was unclear if the school's new turf field would be ready in time.

"Right around 7:30, 8 p.m., it was clear that everything would be fine," said Southern Columbia Superintendent Paul Caputo.

Work on the field started in June. Superintendent Caputo tells Newswatch 16 recent rainy weather slowed down the work and the field was not ready earlier this week.

"Up until that point, because there is brushing and there were things that needed to be done, we weren't sure what the weather was going to be like."

But Thursday's weather was good so the work got done.

"We had all the time that we needed yesterday to get the things that needed to be done yesterday done," said Caputo.

This isn't just a football field anymore. It's now a multipurpose field that's being used for field hockey, soccer, and a lot more.

Junior Ethan Dunkelberger plays soccer at Southern Columbia.

"The other field is grass, it's typical. But it's down low where no one really knows where it's at. Up here, everyone knows where this is. It's going to be great to have everyone up here to see it," said Dunkelberger.

"We can spread out. A lot of kids will be able to participate at the same time and I won't have to sit kids. Our movement will increase," said Phys-Ed teacher Ted Deljanovan.

The new turf field at Southern Columbia cost $900,000 and also includes some new lighting.

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