Spring sports biggest enemy: winter weather

The last couple of seasons have been difficult for athletes in outdoor spring activities

Aaron Young
Staff Writer

With Minnesota this time of year filled with snowstorms, flurries, and crazy temperatures, Mankato State has had to cancel classes, affecting students and professors alike.

However, this also impacts the sports teams and athletes in particular. Weather issues cause delays and postpones for all spring sports. It can take a toll on athletes and how they approach their game.

How bad has it been for spring sports this season?

Valerie Bresnahan, who is a senior on the tennis team, explains how the snow affects traveling to practice.

“Having more snow during the winter usually means there are poor road conditions. This makes driving to the indoor tennis courts in St. Peter extremely difficult.”

She then continued by saying how much of a toll the weather takes on the team as a whole.

“Teammates who are able must warm up their vehicles, shovel them out of parking spaces, plan accordingly to be able to pick-up and drop-off teammates from various locations, and take extra time to drive safely to practice.”

Last semester, the tennis team only had one meet before weather intervened.

Senior Jordan Hart, who is an outfielder for the baseball team, expressed his thoughts on the matter.

Since I play baseball, it is ideal to not have snow on the ground when playing. Seeing snow on the ground every day, makes me think, “When will we actually get to play a home game?” And “how much class will I miss for traveling to make up cancelled games?’”

When asked how it affects his routine, not much changes except that there is more preparation.

“My routine doesn’t really change due to weather. I prepare for the scheduled date and if it gets cancelled, then I will get more time to prepare for the next.”

More time to practice is never a bad thing. Although his routine doesn’t change, Hart gave some insight into the difference between playing inside against outside, and the result of it.

“Yes, it can be frustrating at times. Just by practicing inside is a physical and mental challenge. It’s physical, because the surface is different and the its nothing like the real thing.

The mental challenge is not being able to see the ball travel inside the cages, not getting an actual fly/ground ball, and the atmosphere is just different. We went to Arkansas last weekend for a three-game series and coming back to practice inside was draining mentally.”

When a game gets postponed, Hart explained he does worry about the missed time and how that affected the schedule.

“When games get cancelled, there is a sense for frustration and knowing there isn’t anything we can do about the weather. I know we will have to make it up eventually and then thinking about missing class time and worrying about falling behind.”

As mentioned earlier, the tennis team has had a delay, and so far, this semester, the softball team had a game cancelled on them as well due to weather. With how unpredictable the weather can be in Minnesota, athletes and coaches have to be prepared for cancelled practice or delayed games.

Hopefully, the snow will be gone soon and the sun will appear so these athletes can get back on the field/court and compete against the best in their conference.

Feature photo courtesy of the Associated Press.

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