Sports schedules up in smoky air
August 29, 2013
Conditions stemming from the Rim fire burning near Yosemite are affecting sports activities in Carson Valley and around Northern Nevada.
Douglas High School's programs, as well as Valley youth soccer and football teams, have had practices either cancelled or moved indoors since Aug. 22.
At least 700 American Youth Soccer Organization participants ranging in age from 4 to 16 had their practices and games canceled through Friday, AYSO Region 318 Commissioner Liz Baumgartner informed families on Monday.
"It's been difficult," she said. "As always, we must consider the health and safety of the children and adult volunteers."
At Douglas High School, all practices were conducted indoors Monday and Tuesday. The status of events on Thursday and Friday also remain uncertain.
Decisions on the junior varsity football game against Wooster at 5 p.m. Thursday, and the freshman team's 3:30 p.m. scrimmage against Incline will be made later this week. The fate of the varsity's game at Reno High is expected to be decided on Thursday, according to coach Ernie Monfiletto.
The season-opening Douglas Class Races cross country meet scheduled for 3 p.m. Friday at Lampe Park is also up in the air.
A parent-coach meeting for all of Douglas' fall sports teams is being held 7 p.m. today in the school commons area.
To the south in Mono County, Coleville High football coach Will Sandy reports the time for Saturday's season opener against Smith Valley has been rescheduled for 10 a.m.
"The air quality has been better in the morning and we feel this is the only way to get the game in," Sandy noted.
Donnie Nelson, assistant director for the Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association, acknowledged all western Nevada high schools are facing the same conditions.
"We're in a wait-and-see mode right now," Nelson said, adding that authority for game schedules has been issued to the individual school districts.
"Nobody wants to pull the plug, but the games are secondary to health of the student-athletes, coaches, officials and fans."
Nelson added that football games called off this weekend will be cancelled and not postponed.
"There are no league games scheduled, nothing that would impact playoff scenarios, so we will just move on to the next week," he said.
The Douglas County Parks and Recreation Department has also announced its outdoor adult league activities this week have been called off.
Baumgartner noted in her announcement practices may resume when the air clears. She also acknowledged all of the Valley's youth sports teams are scrambling to find alternatives for practice sessions.
"We are trying to work with that scenario trying to find indoor facilities, which are kind of limited here," she said.
This week's AYSO games will be rescheduled for the week of Sept. 30-Oct. 4, and into the following week if necessary, Baumgartner added.