The Sports Turf Managers Association (STMA) has named State College Spikes Senior Sports Turf Manager Matt Neri the 2016 New York-Penn League Sports Turf Manager of the Year. Neri, the only sports turf manager that Medlar Field at Lubrano Park has ever known, is now a four-time recipient of the prestigious award, presented annually by Minor League Baseball and Major League Baseball.
The Williamsburg, PA native previously earned the honor in 2006, 2010 and 2011. Neri is now one of the nominees for the Short-Season/Rookie Sports Turf Manager of the Year Award, one of four classification-wide honors bestowed by the STMA.
In addition to maintaining a Major League-quality playing surface for the Spikes season, Neri also oversees the sports turf operations for all Penn State University baseball games and other field activities held at the ballpark.
Neri has been involved in professional baseball sports turf management since 2002, when he began his career with the Altoona Curve of the Eastern League assisting in overseeing the sports turf operations at the then-named Blair County Ballpark. While with the Curve, Matt was part of two Eastern League Field of the Year awards. Neri currently resides in Warriors Mark with his wife Christy and two children.
"Matt Neri is the perfect candidate for the Sports Turf Manager of the Year Award," said Spikes General Manager Scott Walker. "We are truly fortunate to have his services available in State College, and could not be happier that he is part of our Spikes family."
Medlar Field at Lubrano Park will play host to the Spikes' defense of their New York-Penn League title in 2017. For more information on season tickets, as well as a variety of group packages and experiences for the 2017 season, fans can inquire with a Spikes ticket representative at call (814) 272-1711.