ROBERT R. HERMANN STADIUM
The 1999 season was a significant hallmark for Saint Louis University's soccer programs. The women's and men's teams returned to the renovated Robert R. Hermann Stadium and enjoyed the benefits of a true home-field advantage as each won a Conference USA title.
Between the SLU teams, Hermann Stadium has hosted eight conference tournaments and has been an NCAA Tournament venue in 11 of the 16 years since the renovation. Most notably, the facility was the home of the 2006 NCAA Men's Soccer College Cup, which SLU hosted in conjunction with the St. Louis Sports Commission.
The stadium is located one block east of Grand Boulevard on Laclede Avenue, just behind the Busch Student Center. Game parking is available a short walking distance away in a 2,000-car garage at the intersection of Olive Boulevard and Compton Avenue. The Billiken Sports Center's baseball and softball diamonds are adjacent to Hermann Stadium, and Chaifetz Arena, which opened in April 2008, is located to the southeast.
The Hermann Stadium renovation began March 17, 1999, with the removal of the synthetic surface. The sod for the natural-grass field was laid May 25. The state-of-the-art surface is a mixture of blue grasses that cover 155,000 square feet. The Billikens play on a regulation 120x75-yard soccer pitch.
The surface sits upon an 8,400-ton root zone composed of 90 percent sand and 10 percent peat moss. A four-inch gravel drainage blanket is composed of 3,100 tons of pea gravel. The drainage system is capable of filtering 10 inches of rain in an hour. The grass is watered by a sprinkler system that features 70 sprinkler heads connected by approximately 1.5 miles of piping.
The addition of permanent seating on the east side of the stadium, along with expansion of the main grandstand, increased the facility's seating capacity from 2,400 to 6,050.
Munie Outdoor Services of Caseyville, Ill., was the contractor for the project under the direction of the University's grounds and materials management office.
The Billiken men's team christened Hermann Stadium by knocking off defending national champion and preseason No. 1 Indiana 3-2 in an exhibition game Aug. 21, 1999, before a record on-campus crowd of 6,517. The women's team also won its inaugural game at Hermann Stadium, prevailing 5-3 over Iowa Aug. 27. Mandy Trokey netted the Bills' first goal at the facility.
After hosting three conference tournaments on the pitch, including the 2006 Atlantic 10 Championship, the women's team played its first-ever NCAA Tournament games at Hermann Stadium that same season. The A-10 Championship returned in 2008, followed by the men's A-10 Championship in 2011.
Originally opened for play in 1990 as the Billiken Sports Center, the facility was home to the men's soccer team until 1994. It also served as the site for NCAA Division I and II playoff games and as the home field for other local collegiate soccer programs when their fields were unplayable due to severe weather conditions.