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Spring sport schedules wrecked by wintry weather

POLSON – Though the calendar shows it is spring, frigid temperatures, snow, sleet, wind, and rain have made it feel far from it. 

The recent less-than-desirable weather has left area spring sport teams to juggle everything from cancellations and postponements to trying to find ways to practice.

“It has been an interesting year for extracurricular activities in Western Montana with smoke this fall, cyber-attacks, a collapsing gym and a winter that refuses to give up,” Polson athletic director Jay Krantz said.

Though harsh weather in early spring is nothing new for Montanans, this year’s longer than normal cold streak has forced postponements and cancellations for sports programs, and athletic administrators scrambling to find solutions.

“Spring sports weather conditions are always the main concern since they are outside where adverse conditions can affect competition,” Arlee athletic director Amy Bartels said. “We will make sure the outside conditions are safe for play as well as evaluating upcoming weather conditions. We then make the call to cancel or not. We work to find another date at the same facility if possible or another date at another venue. In some cases we do not reschedule at all.” 

Krantz noted, “Number one is always student safety, either on the bus or at the competition. I fully realize that if we waited for the perfect weather conditions in Montana we would seldom be able to hold an athletic contest. In the same breath, there is no event that is so important that it can’t be rescheduled for a more favorable condition.” 

Although wintry weather has prevented more than a dozen local tennis, softball and track and field events, Mission-Arlee-Charlo (MAC) softball did catch a break by playing a nonconference road game on Friday at Libby and Ronan slipped in some sets of tennis in Stevensville on Saturday.

While the old saying may be true that April showers bring May flowers, there hasn’t been anything said about what comes from wintry weather during the month. Whatever it brings, area spring athletic programs hope some games come along with it.

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