MISSOULA, Mont. -- The University of Montana broke ground on its new softball stadium as the women's team prepares to take the field next spring.
Athletic director Kent Haslam says the $1 million stadium will have synthetic turf, allowing the team to play in all kinds of weather. The Grizzly Scholarship Association committed $200,000 to the project and UM students passed a new fee to help pay for the program.
Montana will be the eighth Big Sky Conference school with a women's softball program. Softball is UM's 15th sport.
During Thursday's groundbreaking ceremony, members of UM's track and soccer teams modeled the new softball uniforms.
Practice starts Sept. 2 and the new team will play exhibition games in the fall. UM's home opener is March 18 against Carroll (Mont.), which also added softball for the 2014-15 school year.