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Floyd County Sports

January 26, 2014

SCHEDULE OVERHAUL: Teams across area dealing with postponements

Make-up games have caused logjams in schedules across Indiana

> SOUTHERN INDIANA — The 2013-14 high school winter sports season has been one of those campaigns where Old Man Winter has wreaked havoc on all the prep athletic schedules throughout the state, including Southern Indiana.

Saturday was the latest day where the recent brutal winter weather wiped out a huge chunk of the area athletic slate. Snow on early Saturday morning forced schools to postpone several high school boys’ and girls’ basketball games, swimming meets and wrestling tournaments.

Since early December, either waves of winter precipitation or bitterly cold temperatures where wind chills have fallen below zero degrees have prompted area schools to cancel their sporting events and then reschedule them.

Long-time Rock Creek Academy boys’ basketball coach and athletic director Chris Brown says this winter has been one of a kind.

“It’s one of the unique ones because this has happened about seven or eight times,” Brown said about the number of winter weather episodes that has forced to rearrange his school’s athletic calendar.

Some area teams have gone several days without playing in a game or competing in a meet.

For instance, the Silver Creek boys’ basketball team’s home game with New Albany on Friday night was its first contest in nearly two weeks. The Dragons’ previous game was a 52-45 home loss to Borden on Jan. 11.

Silver Creek was supposed to play Mid-Southern Conference rival Brownstown Central between the Borden and New Albany games. But that contest got postponed on its originally scheduled date of Jan. 17 and then the game was called off again on its first reschedule date, which was last Thursday. The contest is now scheduled to be played on Tuesday, Feb. 25.

In the meantime, the Dragon players were growing tired of just having practices and playing against each other.

“They were anxious to get out there, for sure. But we were not the only team in that situation,” Silver Creek boys’ basketball coach Brandon Hoffman said. “Kids are kids. They don’t play basketball for practices - they play it for the games.”

When Hoffman’s troops found out their game with New Albany was still on schedule on Friday, they were anxious and excited to hit the hardwood.

“Once they found out they were going to play and on top of that it was New Albany, they were ready to go,” said Hoffman, whose team lost to the Bulldogs 49-46.

Brown’s team is in the middle of a game hiatus right now. The Lions, who have not played a game since Jan. 18, were scheduled to host Medora on Saturday. But that game got postponed and has been rescheduled for Thursday, Feb. 6. Rock Creek’s next scheduled game is Wednesday at home versus Crothersville.

Brown and Hoffman both said the frustrating part of the postponements is their teams prepare and get fired up to play their next opponent only to see their game get postponed.

“Every time that the kids get a call, text or tweet that their game gets called off, they get upset because there is no game,” Brown said. “We look forward to playing, but it gets frustrating.”

Hoffman and Brown each conducted practices in different ways during their respective stretches between games.

Along with preparing for his team’s potential next opponent, Hoffman says it was a good opportunity to work on some areas of his team’s game that needed some fine-tuning.

“We were able to work on some things that we were not doing well. We spent more time on that,” Hoffman said. “We got as much shooting in as we could.”

Brown had his players go through a few intrasquad scrimmages last week to keep his players’ competitive juices flowing.

“They’ve been very competitive. These guys hate to lose. It keeps everything honest that way,” Brown said. “We’ve tried to keep them playing hard and being hungry, and I think we’ve done that.”

Like several teams, the Dragons and the Lions will each face a logjam of contests in their schedules in February as each of them have several make-up games.

Silver Creek must play six games from Feb. 13-25. Three of those contests will be against opponents they are battling for the MSC championship with in Clarksville, Corydon Central and Brownstown.

Hoffman says his players should be looking forward to that stretch.

“If I was a kid, I would love it because there are no practices. It will be a challenge, but the kids will enjoy it,” Hoffman said. “The month of February is going to come down to who gets hot and stays healthy.”

The Lions will have six games from Feb. 6-22. During that stretch, Rock Creek will square off against defending Class A state champion Borden and Providence.

“It will be challenging, but I think it will be a good challenge. We’re pretty deep and I think we can use our depth to our advantage,” Brown said. “It’s a very tough stretch, but we’re looking forward to it. It will make us better.”

Coaches and players are not the only people who have had to deal with the rash of postponements.

Area athletic directors have been working with their peers to get canceled games rescheduled. Being the AD at Rock Creek, Brown has had to set up make-up dates for his team, the girls’ basketball team and middle school squads.

“It’s difficult, especially when you throw in middle school, too,” Brown said. “Like any athletic director, you don’t like to do it, but you have to do it. It makes it harder for us because we have just the one [gymnasium].”

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