Athletes waiting out the storm

Weather causes cancellations for many Sailor teams

— Steamboat's girls lacrosse team was so excited to step onto a grass field this weekend that some of the players were willing to make the trip to Denver to play, even if their opponents were not.

Similar to every other outdoor Steamboat spring sport, the girls' lacrosse games were canceled. That means the Sailors have to wait another week before getting the chance to play on a regular-sized field without any snow.

Despite the 3 to 4 inches of snow that blanketed the Denver fields Friday and Saturday, girls lacrosse coach Riley Polumbus said some of her players wanted to make the drive to Denver. They were willing to wait for the snow to melt just in case the games against Mullen and Eaglecrest could be rescheduled.

"It was very disappointing. We even had a couple of girls that wanted to wait it out," Polumbus said. "They were very excited to play and very excited to be outside. They haven't been outside at all, except to run."

The girls lacrosse team was not the only one to have games called off because of the storm that dumped on Steamboat Thursday and was still strong in Denver by Friday. The girls soccer team did not get the chance to play their season opener against Broomfield Saturday and the boys lacrosse team had a four-team tournament at the University of Colorado canceled.

Although the girls soccer team did get the chance to practice on fields in Denver, the boys lacrosse team never left Steamboat and rescheduled the tournament for this Saturday after playing Columbine Friday.

The only Steamboat team that did play this weekend was the girls tennis team, who finally had the chance to host its first match Friday night after having five canceled so far this season. With matches called off since March 1, the Sailors started their season indoors at Steamboat's Tennis Center against Aspen Friday.

But the other three teams will have to wait until next week for the official start of their seasons. And for the teams that have been practicing inside the high school since the start of the spring training Feb. 21, "gym" fever is starting to build.

"We need the team on the field right now and starting to play games," boys lacrosse coach Bob Hiester said.

In the inaugural season of Steamboat's boys lacrosse team, getting onto a regulation-sized field is an important part of learning the game. Last weekend's scrimmages along the Front Range was the first time many of Hiester's players had ever played lacrosse outside of a gym.

Although winter weather wreaking havoc on sports schedules is typical in March, Polumbus said it would help to have a later start to the spring season and to extend the state playoffs further into May.

"I think they try to start way too early. I wish they used more of May for games. It would really help. Everybody has problems in mid-March. In March it snows in Denver just as much as it does here," Polumbus said.

But, for this season, Polumbus said she'll be taking her team out to parking lots to practice and be keeping her fingers crossed that winter weather will not postpone Friday's game against Liberty.

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