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With This Weather, Scheduling Spring Sports Is No Easy Task

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(credit: CBS) John Lauritsen
John Lauritsen is a reporter from Montevideo, Minn. He joined WCCO-...
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MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — It felt a bit like March out there Tuesday, not May. But for some high school sports teams, it was good enough.

Just like last year, it has been a challenging spring to try and get baseball and softball games in. Snow in April and a rainy May have some schools working overtime to get a season in.

For Armstrong softball coach Jourdan Hayes, it’s not enough just to scout the opponent this year. She’s got to have a scouting report on the field conditions, too.

“It’s always a swamp out in right field,” Hayes said. “Left field is okay, but the right side is always swampy.”

We’ve had rain in 17 of the past 25 days, and that’s forced the Falcons to cram a full softball season into just a couple weeks.

Trying to reschedule is like trying to figure out a complicated math problem.

“It’s double-headers, five days a week — sometimes on Saturdays,” Hayes said. “So it gets really tiring.”

It’s the same problem as last year when Armstrong had to play 20 games in two and-a-half weeks just to get a full schedule in.

Seniors like Caitlin Wachsmuth, the team’s captain and pitcher, say it isn’t as bad as last year, but it’s close.

“Last week, we had seven games as opposed to a couple weeks before we just had practices,” Wachsmuth said. “It’s totally different, tough for players and their arms. Just gets tough.”

The problem for Armstrong and some other schools is that their fields are built on clay so they take longer to drain.

Armstrong’s conference changed the rules this year so they only have to get in one game against each opponent to make it count, instead of two. It’s not ideal, but it’s better than getting completely shut out.

“We keep hoping that spring is going to show up eventually,” said parent John Ripka. “Most of the parents are bundled up, trying to stay warm.”

Last week, Armstrong played a game at home and then drove to another school to play a night game, just to get the game in.

Baseball, tennis and golf have also been affected by the weather.

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