Spring? Sports

Connor Casne-Jones, Head Writer

Spring sports are here. Spring, however, is not. Vigilante Stadium, along with all outdoor tennis courts and softball fields are currently buried under feet of snow. Due to the winter conditions coaches have been forced to move practice indoors until the snow thaws. Helena faced similar conditions last spring, so coaches were more prepared. Despite this, missing the beginning of the season is never easy for coaches or athletes.


Track is by far the most popular spring sport in terms of participants but they too were forced inside for the beginning of practice. The distance team, however, is seemingly impervious to the cold, electing to run outside despite the snow. Nicholas Pida a distance runner at Helena high said “Running with ice and snow outside is a little spooky, but we overcome.” Pida will run the 800 and 1600 this year for Coach Garza. Two-time high jump state champion and world record holder Trey Tintinger said “The snow is rough. I haven’t been able to do any practice jumps.”


Softball made a run at state last year and hope to go even further this year. But with snow covering the field they have been forced to conduct tryouts inside. Pitcher Mariah English said, “It’s pretty annoying not being able to just get on the field, but we make adjustments and work hard in the gym” according to English the inability to use the field has affected tryouts, saying “we’re still able to hit in the cage and field in the gym but again, not ideal.” Although the conditions are not ideal, the makeup of this year’s softball team is. Make sure to keep an eye on our lady Bengals softball team this year, a state championship is a more than realistic goal for them.


The tennis team began last year shoveling courts, and they are doing the same this year. The tennis team has made efforts to clear the buried tennis courts. On Thursday the entire team ventured up to Lockey Park to dig holes in the snow, thus allowing the court underneath to heat up and thaw the courts quicker. The tennis team hopes to be practicing outdoors by the end of spring break. Senior captain Gavin Anderson said “It sucks. hopefully in future years montana will allow us to have an actual spring.” Head Coach Lance Boche was able to reach an agreement with the board at the Last Chance Tennis Center allowing the team to practice indoors Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, for the next couple weeks.


Despite the best efforts of coaches and administration it is very difficult to effectively practice without the use of outdoor facilities. One possible way for Montana High Schools to fix the issue of the weather preventing practice for spring sports would be to start the season after spring break and go until after Memorial Day. This would give more time for winter to end and more time for athletes in winter sports to cool off before the spring season. Although such a change is unlikely, the MHSAA should consider pushing back the spring sports season.This is now two years in a row that spring sports have started the season knee-deep in snow, let’s hope it does not become three.