banner
Soccer

RailHawks, Galaxy a big match-up on smaller pitch

Posted June 23
Updated June 24

When the Carolina RailHawks take the field against the LA Galaxy Tuesday at 7 p.m., it won’t be in their familiar stadium, but instead on a much smaller practice field.

“That field is an incredible field in itself,” said goalie Scott Goodwin. “Half the games you play are away games and this one’s a lot more familiar than any of those so I think there’s still a level of comfort there.”

WakeMed Soccer Park is currently undergoing a re-sodding, making a change from ryegrass to Bermuda grass. The switch comes at quite possibility the most inopportune time for the RailHawks.

After advancing to the fifth round of the Lamar Hunt U.S. Open Cup with a penalty-kick win over MLS’ Chivas USA June 14, the RailHawks earned the opportunity to host a more high-profile MLS team -- the LA Galaxy.

With their main field receiving some maintenance, the RailHawks-Galaxy game will be played at Koka Booth Stadium, commonly referred to as Field 2.

“We’d love to be in the stadium and sell it out, pack the house,” said forward Zack Schilawski. “But it’s out of our control. For us it’s just another game. I’m sure the venue will look great and be great for tomorrow night.”

WakeMed permanently seats 10,000 people, Field 2 permanently seats just 510, but additional bleachers will be added Tuesday to accommodate up to 3,000. As of 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, the game was sold out.

“As we expected, the tickets to Tuesday’s match versus the LA Galaxy with Landon Donovan and Robbie Keane have been in high demand,” said Team President Curt Johnson. “We want to give our fans the opportunity to attend this high-level match. Opening up these new seating opportunities at Koka Booth Stadium Field 2 allows us to do that.”

The Town of Cary and the RailHawks organization agreed prior to the season that they would re-sod WakeMed Soccer Park during the first week of June, between the Spring and Fall NASL seasons. When the Lamar Hunt schedule was released in April they took another look at their options.

Assuming Carolina would make it to the fourth round and host between June 10 and 18, time became an issue. With the RailHawks hosting Puebla FC for a friendly on July 6, they couldn’t lay the Bermuda grass and give it time to take any later than their fourth round game. The only other option would be to lay a thicker slab of Bermuda grass for $250,000 -- which was taken off the table almost as soon as it was put on it.

“We knew a long time ago what the possibility was when we got to this stage, if we were going to be at home, we’d be on a smaller field,” said head coach Colin Clarke. “But I’d rather be at home than be away, so we’ll take it.”

Per the United States Soccer Federation, hosting a fifth round game costs the home team $18,000 as well as 15 percent of gross receipts above $100,000.

The average game day ticket price at WakeMed is $17; at capacity that would roughly equal $170,000 before concessions, merchandise and parking fees. For the match against the Galaxy tickets are averaging $20.

Even with fewer seats available, the Town of Cary is advising drivers to expect heavy traffic delays near WakeMed Soccer Park. No lanes will be closed but drivers near the intersections of E. Chatham Street and Maynard Road and E. Chatham Street and Trinity Road should expect delays and temporary traffic shifts.

It’s an unfortunate situation for the organization and the fans hoping to attend, but if the RailHawks didn’t keep winning there wouldn’t be soccer at all.

6 Comments

This story is closed for comments.

Newest First
View all
  • jrelon Jun 24, 10:09 a.m.

    Ouch, they gotta be kicking themselves at the lost revenue from 7000 less seats. Tough situation though.

  • johnrmccray Jun 24, 10:54 a.m.

    Go RailHawks!

  • jimho Jun 24, 3:37 p.m.

    Skipping the game because of the field situation. Very unfortunate and disappointing.

  • kiljadn2 Jun 24, 4:22 p.m.

    Had no idea it was being played on the smaller field. Disappointing.

  • archmaker Jun 24, 4:22 p.m.

    Skipping the game because of the field situation. Very unfortunate and disappointing.

    — Posted by jimho

    ditto - will instead be sitting on the couch streaming the game online from WRAL.

  • archmaker Jun 24, 8:47 p.m.

    Can somebody please pass a note to the wral commentator that it is not "langdon" donovan?

TV
  • SEC: Arkansas at Missouri

    Today at 2:30 pm on WRAL-TV

  • HSFB: Football Friday with Tom Suiter

    Tonight at 11:35 on WRAL-TV

Scoreboard
Local
12:00pm Today
NCCU
EILL
7:00pm Tonight
NCSU
BSU
7:00pm Tonight
PIT
CAR
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
GSW
8:00pm Tonight
UF
UNC
8:30pm Tonight
TULSA
ECU
1:00pm Today
BOS
CHI
7:00pm Tonight
CHA
GSW
7:30pm Tonight
TOR
DAL
7:30pm Tonight
DET
MIL
7:30pm Tonight
ATL
NOP
8:00pm Tonight
HOU
LAC
8:00pm Tonight
OKC
NYK
8:00pm Tonight
IND
ORL
8:30pm Tonight
SAN
SAC
9:00pm Tonight
DEN
PHO
10:00pm Tonight
POR
MEM
10:30pm Tonight
LAL
MIN
1st
WMICH 0
NILL 0
 
12:00pm Today
SMU
HOU
12:00pm Today
IOWA
NEB
12:00pm Today
SFLA
UCF
12:00pm Today
MARS
WKENT
1:00pm Today
KSU
AKR
1:00pm Today
BGU
BST
1:00pm Today
UMASS
BUF
1:00pm Today
EMICH
TOL
2:30pm Today
MIZZ
ARK
3:00pm Today
SALABAMA
NAVY
3:30pm Today
ARZ
ARST
3:30pm Today
AFA
COLST
3:30pm Today
UCLA
STAN
8:00pm Tonight
VT
UVA
8:30pm Tonight
TULSA
ECU
12:00pm Today
NCCU
EILL
12:00pm Today
KU
TENN
1:00pm Today
TEXAM
NO
 
1:30pm Today
NCAT
RAD
 
2:00pm Today
GEOR
BUT
2:30pm Today
BRO
PVU
2:30pm Today
RIU
SCU
2:30pm Today
NARZ
SOUTH
3:00pm Today
DART
MAST
3:30pm Today
WRST
FIU
3:30pm Today
XAV
UTEP
4:00pm Today
OSU
JMU
4:00pm Today
TXSOU
LAM
 
4:00pm Today
TAMCC
MVSU
 
4:00pm Today
AKAN
MIZST
 
4:00pm Today
BUCK
PSU
 
4:00pm Today
PROV
YALE
4:30pm Today
UGA
MINN
 
4:30pm Today
WISC
OKLA
5:00pm Tonight
Terriers
NORST
 
5:00pm Tonight
PEAY
STEPH
6:00pm Tonight
FSU
CSOU
 
6:00pm Tonight
VALPO
DRAK
 
6:00pm Tonight
CIN
MTST
6:00pm Tonight
SDU
PRIN
6:00pm Tonight
CSFU
USCU
6:15pm Tonight
WASU
RICE
6:30pm Tonight
GT
RIDE
7:00pm Tonight
TXPA
ALAST
 
7:00pm Tonight
NCSU
BSU
7:00pm Tonight
TCU
BRAD
7:00pm Tonight
WAKE
DELST
 
7:00pm Tonight
HART
EMERSON
 
7:00pm Tonight
STJ
GONZ
 
7:00pm Tonight
CLEM
HIGH
 
7:00pm Tonight
SYR
HC
 
7:00pm Tonight
MD
MON
7:00pm Tonight
JVST
SAV
 
7:00pm Tonight
MIAMI
SALA
7:00pm Tonight
RUTG
VANDY
 
7:30pm Tonight
PETE
TENST
 
8:00pm Tonight
MARS
CLST
8:00pm Tonight
JST
HOF
 
8:00pm Tonight
INDST
MEM
8:00pm Tonight
UF
UNC
8:00pm Tonight
LATU
SAMF
8:00pm Tonight
TULA
SELA
 
8:00pm Tonight
NEB
TENNM
8:30pm Tonight
MISS
CREI
8:30pm Tonight
PORT
MURST
 
9:00pm Tonight
MARQ
MSU
9:00pm Tonight
ARK
UNT
9:00pm Tonight
NCOL
STET
 
9:00pm Tonight
IND
UNCG
 
9:00pm Tonight
SJST
WMICH
 
9:05pm Tonight
MNTST
TXARL
9:30pm Tonight
UVA
LAS
9:30pm Tonight
STLU
MSST
9:30pm Tonight
COLST
PAC
10:00pm Tonight
UTAH
NDAK
 
10:30pm Tonight
ILL
BAY
10:30pm Tonight
UAB
UCLA
11:30pm Tonight
WASH
LBSU
11:59pm Tonight
UCSB
MERC
1:00pm Today
PHI
NYR
4:00pm Today
ANA
CHI
5:00pm Tonight
WAS
NYI
7:00pm Tonight
PIT
CAR
7:00pm Tonight
NJD
DET
7:00pm Tonight
BUF
MON
7:00pm Tonight
CLB
VAN
7:00pm Tonight
BOS
WIN
7:30pm Tonight
FLA
OTT
8:00pm Tonight
STL
EDM
8:30pm Tonight
DAL
MIN