The Free Press, Mankato, MN

Sports

May 2, 2014

Wet weather forces events to be Called Off

Even when rain subsides, field conditions make things difficult

There have been a lot of high school athletes practicing this spring, but there hasn’t been a whole lot of playing.

The extended winter and now rain-filled spring have caused major headaches for activities directors across the state. Mankato West activities director Brian Fell said this week has been particularly bad.

“We had so much rain at the start of the week we could hardly get anything in,” he said. “Now it looks like the rain may have stopped, but many of the fields are still unplayable because of all the water.”

Todd Waterbury, the Mankato East activities director, agree it has been a rough spring.

“It’s not as bad as last year,” he said. “That was the worst in my 11 years here. But this spring is getting close.”

Waterbury estimates the Cougars have had to reschedule or cancel at least 17 varsity events already this spring. And that doesn’t include all the JV, B- and C-squad games that have had to be moved around.

West has experienced a similar number of postponements/cancellations.

“We’re at the point now where we’re just running out of room,” Fell said. “Nonconference games are being canceled and being replaced by conference games. Just looking a the rest of the month, it looks like we have only one or two days left for each sport to actually reschedule events.”

Rescheduling games is not a particularly difficult process, but it is time consuming. There are calls, missed calls, emails and more emails.

And there other things to consider such as band and choir concerts that need to be worked around. Both ADs are still trying to keep Wednesdays open, but that is becoming difficult, as well. Next Wednesday, for example, the East-West softball game will take place at 4 p.m. after getting washed out earlier.

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