Pitt women’s lacrosse finds new home for inaugural 2022 season

Highmark+Stadium+will+be+the+home+of+Pitt+women%E2%80%99s+lacrosse+for+its+inaugural+2022+season.+Pictured+is+the+Panthers+lacrosse+team%E2%80%99s+first+practice+on+Aug.+30.

Pamela Smith | Visual Editor

Highmark Stadium will be the home of Pitt women’s lacrosse for its inaugural 2022 season. Pictured is the Panthers lacrosse team’s first practice on Aug. 30.

By Richie Smiechowski, Staff Writer

Pitt women’s lacrosse announced Monday afternoon that it will call Highmark Stadium, located on Pittsburgh’s South Side, home for its inaugural 2022 season this spring. This is the latest in a number of firsts for the newly minted Panthers lacrosse program. They revealed a new logo on Aug. 29 and held their first official fall practice the following day.

Highmark Stadium lies just across the Monongahela River from Downtown Pittsburgh and is currently home to the Pittsburgh Riverhounds SC. The 8-year-old stadium features a maximum capacity of 5,000 people with additional standing room space and is equipped with a FIFA-certified synthetic turf field. Pitt fans in the bleachers can enjoy views of the Pittsburgh skyline while watching the new program take on ACC foes.

Head Coach Emily Boissonneault said in a statement that the stadium will provide great experiences for both players and fans.

“Highmark Stadium will provide our program with one of the best home venue experiences in the country,” Boissonneault said. “Our fans will have easy access to the stadium with a great parking area that the lacrosse pregame tailgating community will appreciate. We are looking forward to launching our inaugural season of Pitt Lacrosse at Highmark Stadium.”

Pitt lacrosse signed a multi-year deal with Highmark Stadium for an undisclosed amount of time. Besides playing its home schedule at the venue, it will also practice and play preseason games there over the fall and spring as well as have its own newly renovated locker room.

Highmark will serve only as a temporary home field for the Panthers. A new lacrosse stadium is part of Pitt Athletics’ Victory Heights initiative, a $250 million master plan to improve and expand on-campus athletics facilities, and will be located where the OC Lot currently stands next to Sutherland Hall.

Pitt scheduled construction to begin this past summer, but was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Athletic Director Heather Lyke said in March she expects the initiative’s first construction project — a 3,500 seat, multi-use arena for volleyball, gymnastics and wrestling — to open in fall 2024.

Riverhounds President Vic Gregovits said in a press release that he believes the partnership will help grow women’s lacrosse in Pittsburgh.

“We are happy to welcome the Pitt women’s lacrosse team to Highmark Stadium for their first season of play,” Gregovits said. “We believe this will be a great home for the team to grow its program and to raise interest in women’s lacrosse in our area.”

Women’s lacrosse will be the second Pitt team to play home games off campus. The football team, which plays its home games at Heinz Field, is the only other squad to host games outside of Oakland.

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