Varsity Kansas

So far, so good: High school sports dodge weather woes

Northwest and Kapaun Mount Carmel, two of the top baseball teams in the City League, took practice a little more seriously leading into a prime time-worthy doubleheader last week.

So when Northwest coach Travis Stockam was notified that the games were postponed due to wet field conditions, he went into overdrive, making the phone calls that resulted in the games being played the following morning.

But postponements in spring sports have been minimal this year.

"The last two years have been miserable. This year has been much better in comparison," City League athletic director Bill Faflick said. "We're just thrilled that it's been as smooth as it has. But that can change with one bad week. The most critical time of the year is our championship season, which begins this weekend with league tennis."

Deb Gilbert, Faflick's secretary at the City League office, plays a large role in the communication process that goes into effect when games are postponed. She contacts athletic directors and the assignor of officials. Once the makeup dates are set, she posts the updates on the league's website. She's also noticed the disparity in rescheduled events this spring.

"I know as recently as two years ago Bill figured that we had rescheduled over 600 events in a two-month period," Gilbert said. "That's because sometimes we were rescheduling events close to three or four times. We would reschedule. Then it would rain. We would reschedule and then it would rain."

There have been roughly 20 rescheduled events by the City League this season, a trend Stockam hopes continues. He's coaching a team that has a shot at a winning Class 6A championship and the effects of rescheduling multiple games at the end of the season could affect his pitchers.

"In baseball, it's not a bad thing to play every other day," Stockam said. "But you don't want to play every day five, six or seven days in a row because that wears on arms."

Augusta softball coach Ray Aguirre said that physical fatigue can be a concern when rescheduling racks up multiple games toward the end of the season, but it's not the most pressing factor that he worries about when it comes to his players.

"It's a big drain. Mentally they're usually prepared for something like that," Aguirre said. "But with the added pressure of finals and the end of school, it just puts a little more stress on them than they're used to."

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