After four seasons of play at Otterbein University, Columbus Eagles FC announced Friday that it will play its 2020 home matches at Capital University. Located in Bexley, Ohio â€“ just five miles from downtown Columbus â€“ Capital’s Bernlohr Stadium is the home of the Crusaders’ men’s and women’s soccer teams, and will be the Eagles’ home for the club’s seventh WPSL season.
Otterbein’s facility became unavailable for the Eagles to use in 2020, hence the venue change, but the move to Capital and Bexley is an exciting one for the Eagles.
“We are excited to be moving closer to downtown Columbus,” club founder and CEO Mark Wise said. “Otterbein has been a great host for the past four years, but we are looking forward to new opportunities to grow our club and fan experience at Capital. With the addition of a programmable scoreboard and the opportunity to control our concessions we are looking forward to providing a enhanced fan experience at our new location.”
Since 2016, Otterbein University’s Memorial Stadium was Columbus’s home field, where the team went 6-1-4 in league matches in the past three seasons. The Eagles are also 2-0-0 at MAPFRE Stadium in that time and played one home match at Capital University in 2019 â€“ a 1-1 draw against Dayton Dutch Lions in June.
Wise and Eagles’ head coach Matt Ogden spearheaded the move to Capital â€“ Ogden is also currently the Crusaders’ women’s soccer head coach and has been since 2014.
Bernlohr Stadium features a more intimate atmosphere for the club’s home matches â€“ the stands are wider but closer to the action, a video scoreboard is available for the Eagles to use, and Capital’s field house is a more comfortable place for fans to enjoy halftimes or weather delays.
Columbus has played between six and eight home matches each of the past four seasons and expects to do the same at its new home. Single-match home tickets will stay the same price â€“ $10 per ticket â€“ and season memberships will stay the same price, too. Season memberships start at $40 for the full 2020 campaign.
Parking will also remain free and plentiful along Mound Street and in an adjacent parking lot. Here’s what the stadium map will look like for most Eagles home matches:
Bernlohr Stadium is just minutes by foot from the bustling East Main Street in Bexley, which features restaurants, bars, cafes, ice cream, and plenty more attractions for Eagles fans to enjoy pre- and post-match.
With the city of Bexley’s rules around the use of stadium lights, most Eagles home matches will kick off in the early evening, with official times to be determined in 2020. The club’s 2020 WPSL schedule will be released in February, after the league meetings on Jan. 25 in Las Vegas, Nev.
The move is exciting news for the Eagles, and the club already has a footprint in east Columbus: Columbus East Soccer Association joined the Eagles as an affiliate earlier in 2019.
Otterbein’s facility becoming unavailable came as a surprise to the club. So, for those fans who have purchased a season ticket membership under the impression the Eagles would be playing in Westerville, if you have questions, please get in touch with our front office at firstname.lastname@example.org.