Has snow gotten the best of JC athletes?

Due to cancellations and delays, student athletes adjust their practice time and coaches reschedule games.


Picture by Billy Jump

Snow days aren’t all fun and games for JC’s winter sports players. For some of the coaches and teams, they can be a real headache. Many of the winter sports cannot afford to miss practices and games this close to the end of the season, and coaches are scrambling to make up lost time.

According to Athletic Director Larry Dukes, “Things get extremely complex as each team wants to reschedule when it is to their advantage.”

The Athletic Office is responsible for “[scheduling] the teams, officials, and transportation. We talk to [other] schools and negotiate make-up dates for our teams,” Dukes said.

The men’s swimming’s championship was canceled due to inclement weather on Wednesday, Feb. 5. Dukes, who is also the swim coach, realizes the effects of school cancellations on the team. “Whether it is the swimmer missing [practice] or the facilities being closed, it all affects the training in a negative way,” Dukes said.

When big games, like a championship meet, are canceled, a lot of planning and negotiating has to go on between schools in order to reschedule it.

However, coaches aren’t the only ones annoyed by the recent school closing.

According to sophomore swimmer Adam Mrowiec, the snow days have “affected our ability as a team, especially for championships.”

“Honestly, I’d rather have practices to get better,” senior and varsity basketball player Marta Moix said. “The season is not long and we need practice so we can execute and perform better in games, so I prefer having practice.”

Junior and varsity basketball shooting guard Kimbal Mackenzie believes that the snow days have “negatively affected us, but every team has to go through it, so it’s neither an advantage nor a disadvantage.”

According to Dukes, individual sports are allowed to request practices to be held when Harford Country Public School system (HCPS)announces a school closure, “but we try to be consistent for all sports unless later times give conditions more time to improve or vice versa.”

On Tuesday, Feb. 3, JC, which ordinarily follows HCPS, announced that after school activities would not be cancelled, even though HCPS announced that it would cancel after school activities. Events, team practices, and the men’s basketball game against Calvert Hall were all held.

“I asked Mrs. Ball to make a second decision on afternoon activities when I knew conditions were going to improve,” Dukes said.

The indoor track team has not been handling the cold weather in an ordinary way. Instead of staying indoors and running laps inside the school, the distance runners on the team have been practicing outside. Sprinters and others on the team who participate in events such as pole vault, hurdles, or high jump still practice indoors.

According to junior indoor track runner Mark Bauer, “When we have a lot of days off, our team is negatively affected, but it has had a minimal effect on me as a runner, individually.”

Mrowiec, who cross trains between swimming and indoor track doesn’t mind practicing in the snow, “but some days it’s just too cold.”

Many teams are in the homestretch of their season and would ordinarily be putting in their greatest effort this time of the year for championships. Adjusting to the weather can be a frustrating task, however, and teams have little room for error when it comes to fitting in the last crucial practices and games necessary for a successful season.

Billy Jump is a Copy Editor for The Patriot and jcpatriot.com.