SALT LAKE CITY — While many are benefiting from Utah’s never-ending winter, the late and ongoing snowfall is having quite an impact on spring sports trying to get their seasons underway.
Logan High School was lucky to be able to get in a soccer game between snow storms last month.
“[Just] trying to do what you can so kids can have an opportunity to go participate,” said Logan assistant principal Mitchell Argyle.
But getting games in hasn’t been easy for Argyle and students.
“You look at the weather and you’re like, ‘Oh my gosh, it’s not going to stop!'”
With mounds of snow on their fields in Cache Valley, Argyle says the challenge is deciding how much the school can spend to try to clear the snow and ice each time.
“You remove it and then that next storm comes in and ruins all the work that got put in there,” he explained.
Track and field events, soccer, baseball, lacrosse, tennis and golf all struggling with their spring sports schedule.
“I haven’t seen this much snow ever on a baseball field,” said Highland High School baseball coach Jayson Kisselburg.
The fields at Highlands High School on Salt Lake’s east side are covered in snow and muddy water.
“I think the biggest frustration for us is that unlike basketball and other sports like in fall and winter, we have to prep our own fields. We have to make sure the dirt’s correct. We have to make sure the fields drain correctly, water’s off the field, it’s playable all of those things. So it puts a lot of pressure on us and our coaching staff to do those things,” said Kisselburg.
As the brand new coach, this year has been tough for Kisselburg.
“We’ve got about two good inches of snow on the field right now,” he said. “And the snow that has melted, if you go look at part of our field, it’s underwater.”
Even a game Highland had scheduled Tuesday at Timpview was canceled.
“You know, my heart goes out to a lot of these kids who had to go through the whole COVD thing, and now they have weather that’s out of their control,” Kisselburg said.
Despite their own issues, Highland is trying to help other schools where they have even worse conditions, like in Park City, having them come down just in homes of getting a game in.
“The spring sports season is proceeding as scheduled, with individual members schools who are affected by weather handling rescheduling issues on a case by case basis. The association’s spring state tournaments remain on schedule,” wrote the Utah High School Activities Association.
Canyons School District spokesman Jeff Haney says this week they have had to cancel all outside club sports and recreational leagues that typically use their fields.
“We are not going to be leasing any of our outside facilities until at least april 10,” Haney explained.
He says the damage done by playing in the mud is just too costly.
‘We’re caught between a rock and a hard place,” explained Haney. “We want our schools to participate and our community to enjoy our fields, but weather is just not cooperating.”
Argyle says schools are doing the best we can with whatever’s thrown at them, but even Logan was forced to delay games scheduled Tuesday.
“The snow was basically gone but then it got so cold there’s some ice there now. I don’t know. We’re trying!” he said.
Argyle added that he’s seen photos of what his family near Bear Lake has been dealing with at their cattle ranch.
“You’re like, ‘Oh, my gosh, I haven’t seen anything like this,’ and most people haven’t seen anything like this. So it’s a new challenge and we’re coming up with ways to let kids practice and get a game in here or there.”
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