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The clouds are building

Liberty High’s football field nears completion, but probably won’t be ready until mid-season
The view the Liberty High Lightning Bolts will have as they gaze across the gridiron at their opponents. Liberty’s first home varsity football game is scheduled for Friday, Aug. 31, and site manager Tyler Cooksley is optimistic the stadium will be either completed or completed enough. However, Liberty High Athletic Director Mike Morrison isn’t as hopeful and has an eye toward Friday, Sept. 14, or even Friday, Sept. 28 (Homecoming for Liberty), for the first game. (photos by Chris Umscheid)

NORTH LIBERTY– Liberty High’s Lightning (the Bolts) will soon have a complex full of clouds to strike from as an athletic complex just west of the school continues to take shape.
Iowa City Community School District (ICCSD) voters approved a $192 million bond issue last September, which included $12,544,000 for the second phase of a three-phase construction plan for Liberty. Phase One was design and construction of the 264,000 square foot school, which opened last August.
Phase Two, which was dependent upon passage of the bond, is the design and construction of the outdoor athletic complex.
Phase Three, currently in the design phase and set for construction starting next spring, is for a two-story classroom addition on the east side of the building.
The athletic complex features a football and track stadium, tennis courts and a soccer field, as well as softball and baseball diamonds. Work began this past spring and the football stadium is nearing completion, while Liberty’s first varsity football season looms large on the horizon.
Liberty opens the season on Friday, Aug. 24, at Iowa City High and is scheduled to host their first home game on Friday, Aug. 31.
Larson Construction’s (general contractor for the athletic complex) Site Manager Tyler Cooksley is operating under a deadline of being, if not totally finished at least close enough, the game can be played on the Aug. 31. Liberty’s Athletic Director Mike Morrison isn’t quite as optimistic and is exploring options for another venue for the Aug. 31 game. Morrison anticipates the first home game to occur on either Friday, Sept. 14 (Mid-Prairie, Wellman visits) or Friday, Sept. 28 (North Scott, Eldridge visits)- Homecoming for the Bolts. The Lightning’s final scheduled home game is set for Friday, Oct. 5 (against Central DeWitt), in the seventh week of a nine-week regular season.
The other fields in the complex will be seeded this fall and good-to-go for soccer in the spring and softball and baseball in the summer.