Life in Northwest Colorado means dealing with inconsistent and erratic weather.
Moffat County High School spring sports teams aren’t immune, and face an almost constant juggling act of canceling and rescheduling games, and moving practice locations indoors.
On Friday, three home sporting events for MCHS were called off due to inclement weather.
The Clint Wells Invitational track and field meet at MCHS, the girls varsity golf tournament at the Yampa Valley Golf Course, and the girls varsity and junior varsity soccer games at Loudy-Simpson Park were all called off early Friday because of snow.
While the soccer games will be made up May 5, the track meet and the golf tournament will not be rescheduled because of time constraints at the end of the season.
“With the weather we get here, the girls can never get into a flow with their game,” golf coach Ann Marie Roberts said. “Golf isn’t something we can go into the gym and everything will be the same. We have to be outside to really practice.”
Roberts said the girls golf team has practiced only about half the season outside. Being in the gym does not allow for the players to refine skills such as putting and chipping, she said.
“When we cancel meets, we lose playing time and we lose competition,” Roberts said. “When we play on our own course, we know everything about it, so it is an advantage. This was the last home tournament for the senior girls, so it is a bummer they had to miss it.”
Lance Scranton, the boys track and field coach, said the reason the team’s home invitational won’t be made up is because of opponents’ traveling situations.
“We had too many teams that wouldn’t be able to get transportation on short notice,” he said. “A lot of our athletes aren’t even hitting last year’s personal records because they haven’t been able to get in as many reps because of the weather.”
To make up for the canceled meet, Scranton said both the boys and girls teams will compete at noon Monday in Kremmling.
Still, he said, losing the team’s only home meet of the season is a disappointment for the athletes.
“It is hard on the kids because they are trying to get a good performance in front of their home crowd,” he said. “Field events already don’t get a lot of practice, and that could affect them as the state meet approaches.”
Scranton said the track and field teams were going to practice Friday, but not outside.
Instead, runners, jumpers and throwers had to prepare on the third floor of MCHS.
“We can work on technique and teach them little things, but it is hard,” Scranton said of practicing inside. “Throwers want to throw and runners want to run.”
While the soccer teams haven’t missed any games so far due to weather — canceled games have been rescheduled — it has caused games to be lumped together.
One week earlier this season, the soccer teams had four games in six days. Next week, to make up for the canceled games on Friday, the teams will play four games in five days.
Harry Tripp, the girls varsity soccer coach, said multiple games in a short period of time wears out his team.
“When we have four games in one week, the girls get tired mentally,” he said. “Soccer is as much a mental game as it is physical, and you need both to play well.”
When it comes to practice, Tripp said the weather has forced the team into the MCHS gymnasium as well as the tennis courts outside the school.
“When we are in the gym or on the tennis courts, we can’t play 11-on-11,” he said. “We can practice passing and shooting and talking, but we don’t get the feel for what a game will be like.”
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