After two weeks of bad weather that threw local high school winter sports athletics into chaos, area teams are finally starting to get back into the swing of things.But it wasn’t easy.
In order to get as many games in as possible and keep to a playoff schedule through state competition, not to mention to squeeze in valuable practice and, yes, class time, some events were canceled and others combined.
“In my opinion the hardest thing is, you hate to lose opportunities for your kids,” said Tom Herman, Director of Student Activities at McLean High School. “We had to make some tough decisions. It’s lost opportunities for kids to compete more.”
For the bigger schools such as McLean, Marshall, Falls Church and Stuart, most of the remaining boys and girls basketball games on the schedules were canceled, depending on district. The teams are getting in some valuable practice time before starting the post-season with district tournaments this week.
The start date for boys and girls basketball district playoffs was pushed to Thursday, and the seeding will be based only on the first half of district regular season play. Though district and regional schedules have been shuffled, the state playoff dates remain unchanged.
Brain Garvey, DSA at Stuart High, when asked of the challenges faced, noted “the constant rescheduling of games and the amount of people that affects.” He added that attempts were made to limit additional missed class time.
For the larger schools, the wrestling teams were not able to complete districts, and instead opted for a “Super Regional” last Tuesday and Wednesday at Fairfax High, including all ineligible competitors. The state competition is this weekend.
The swimming regional competition took place Monday, with teams preparing for states this weekend. Gymnastics regionals were rescheduled to this week.
For Mason High School, which is a smaller school and plays a slightly different schedule, decisions were equally difficult.
For boys and girls basketball, all remaining regular season games were canceled, with the post-season now the focus.
“We made the collective decision to stop playing regular season games,” Mason Athletic Director Tom Horn said.
Teams hadn’t practiced because of the weather, and school officials didn’t like the idea of throwing the boys and girls back into action so soon. “So many schools hadn’t practiced for so long,” Horn said.
The Mason swim team was unable to hold its regional competition, and is sending athletes to states based on earlier qualifying times. Wrestling did get to complete it’s regional.
One thing that was clear is that all parties involved struggled with what was best for those involved.
“Everyone kept in mind the best interest of the kids,” said Marshall High DSA Joe Swarm.