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Pumas debut new stadium at Gordon Field
Kitsap County's local soccer club debuted a new stadium this weekend for the first home game of its season.
In a short ceremony prior to Saturday's match, County Commissioners Rob Gelder and Charlotte Garrido addressed the crowd and Miss West Sound, Megan Leibold, sang the National Anthem.
In her address, Commissioner Garrido professed to being a Pumas fan since the team moved to the area four years ago. She closed her short speech with a shout of "Allez Pumas," the team's rallying cry, which means "Go Pumas."
The Kitsap Pumas are a member of the United Soccer League's Professional Development League, referred to as PDL. The PDL is the fourth tier in the USL system.
The Pumas transferred to Kitsap following the franchise's former life as the USL Seattle Sounders, which is now one of 19 teams in Major League Soccer — the top tier of soccer in the United States.
The Pumas have been playing in Kitsap since 2009. Until this season, the team played home games at Bremerton Memorial Stadium, the home field of Bremerton High School.
Kitsap County Parks and Recreation reached and the Pumas came to an agreement this spring to make Gordon Field the team's new home location. Gordon Field stands on the western end of the Kitsap Fairgrounds.
In 2011, the grass field was updated to synthetic turf and stadium lighting was added.
Kitsap Parks and Recreation plans to update the second field at the fairgrounds to turf as well in coming years when "funding is available." Parks and Recreation expects that update will cost between $800,000 and $1 million.
This off-season the team bought and installed new bleacher seating for as many as 1,200 spectators.
Many of those new seats were filled by kickoff Saturday for the Pumas first home game of the 2013 season. The Pumas took on the Portland Timbers' U23 squad in their sixth game.
For a more detailed match report go back to the sports page.