Shepherd Soccer Complex – Shepherd Rams
Photos by Gregory Koch, Stadium Journey
Stadium Info FANFARE Score: 1.71
Shepherd Soccer Complex 675 University Dr Shepherdstown, WV 25443
Opened: 2013 Capacity: N/A
Rams Soccer in Shepherdstown
Shepherd University is a small college located in Shepherdstown, West Virginia in the eastern panhandle of the state (This is not a typo. Look at a map.) Athletic teams are known as the Rams and compete in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) at Division II NCAA level. Since 2013, the Rams’ soccer teams have called the Shepherd Soccer Complex home. The field is located in the northwest corner of campus and is adjacent to a practice field.
Food & Beverage 0
There is no concession stand at the Shepherd Soccer Complex. Fans are free to bring in their food and drink, except alcohol. On hot days early in the season, you will want to bring your water if nothing else.
The Shepherd Soccer Complex has an extremely basic layout. There are two sets of bleachers on one side of the field, one on either side of the small press box. Many fans also bring their chairs and place them down right next to the field, providing an up-close view of the action. Other than the occasional PA announcement, there is not a lot going on here. Even then, the PA announcer when Stadium Journey visited did not seem to know who Shepherd was playing, referring to their opponent by multiple incorrect names.
Shepherdstown is a friendly town but is not a particularly large one. There are a few restaurants and such in the immediate vicinity, but ultimately this is a sleepy small town in the Blue Ridge Mountains with not much to do.
That being said, there is a lot of natural beauty in the area. Despite the popular John Denver song, the Blue Ridge Mountains and Shenandoah River are mainly associated with Virginia, not West Virginia, but Jefferson County, where Shepherdstown is located, is the one place in the state you can experience them. Civil War buffs can also take a short drive across the Potomac River to visit the historic battlefield at Antietam, Maryland.
Shepherd only averages about a hundred fans per game, and while that may not seem like a lot, remember that this is a very small stadium. The bleachers will be mostly filled with many more fans lining the field in their chairs.
Most of the fans are friends or family of the players but some are just fans of Shepherd athletics, plus a few Shepherd students from time to time. They tend to be knowledgeable about the team and it can get fairly loud here at times. However, the unfortunate reality is that college soccer is just not a big deal for fans at most schools, and Shepherd is no exception.
Shepherdstown can be tough to access and will require at least some travel on local roads. State Route 9 and U.S. Route 340 can get you close, but then you will have to do some driving on back roads to get to campus. Once you enter the university grounds, the soccer complex is in the back corner close to some on-campus apartments and the tennis courts. You will park in an unpaved gravel lot. In the highly unlikely event that fills up, or if you want to park on the pavement and don’t mind walking a bit, parking is available elsewhere on campus as well. Just make sure to obey all posted signs, particularly if attending a weekday game when many lots are restricted. Restrooms are available in a small structure across the street from the parking lot, about a two to three-minute walk from the bleachers.
Return on Investment 2
Tickets are $5 for adults, with children in eighth grade and younger getting in for free. This is a bit disappointing as most college soccer at this level, and even many Division I games, are free for all fans. Considering how basic the stadium is, there is not a whole lot of value here. That being said, $5 isn’t going to break the bank for anyone.
There are no real extras here. There was a bin on the side of the press box that said it held programs, but it did not. Perhaps it does at some games.
Even at a Division, I level, college soccer isn’t nearly as big a deal as other college sports like football and basketball, at least at most schools. Once you get down to the Division II level where Shepherd plays, there are even fewer people interested in it. That being said, there isn’t much other high-level soccer around here, so if you’re in Shepherdstown, you might as well check out a Shepherd soccer game. That being said, there is no reason for the school to charge $5 for admission here.