Weather could have big impact on busy high school sports week

Stonewall Jackson's Nathan Miller brings the ball down the floor as Strasburg's Tyler Fincham defends during a Jan. 19 boys basketball game in Strasburg. Both teams are set to play in the Conference 35 tournament, which was scheduled to start tonight but could be pushed back due to inclement weather. Rich Cooley/Daily file

STRASBURG — Mother Nature picked a bad time to show up in the area.

With conference and state tournaments scheduled for this week, the forecast for snow on Monday could play real havoc with high school sports in the area.

“It’s been a pretty good winter so far,” Central athletic director Kenny Rinker said late Monday morning. “The bad weather is just hitting us at an inopportune time with conference play, with some state events scheduled this weekend.”

All of the conference boys and girls basketball games scheduled for Monday were postponed to Tuesday.

In Conference 28, which features Central, Skyline and Warren County, the quarterfinals are scheduled for Tuesday with semifinals Wednesday and finals on Friday.

In Conference 35, which includes Strasburg and Stonewall Jackson, the quarterfinals are scheduled for Tuesday with the semifinals on Wednesday. The boys final is scheduled for Friday, and Strasburg athletic director and boys basketball coach Matt Hiserman said the girls final could be moved from Thursday to Friday to allow a day off if the quarterfinals and semifinals are played as scheduled.

Conference 21, which includes Sherando, is in much better shape. The Warriors played their quarterfinal games last Friday and both the boys and girls basketball teams advanced to the semifinals, which are scheduled for Tuesday. The finals are scheduled for Thursday.

“The one thing going on with this storm is it’s not just us,” Hiserman said. “It looks like it’s the entire state of Virginia. Everybody’s in the same boat.”

Hiserman said that if the basketball games are postponed on Tuesday the schedule would probably the games would probably be held Wednesday, Thursday and Friday. Rinker said that would probably be the same for the Conference 28 basketball tournaments.

Both Hiserman and Rinker said if the games continue to get postponed late into the week, they may have to consider other options such as just playing the semifinals and finals based on seeding. The Region 3A East basketball tournaments, which include Central, Skyline and Warren County, are scheduled to start next Monday, while Region 2A East with Strasburg and Stonewall Jackson are scheduled to begin on Tuesday.

Central and Strasburg both considered playing games early Monday afternoon. On Sunday night, Central moved its games with William Monroe to 12:30 p.m., while Strasburg considered moving its game to the early afternoon. However, with the forecast for the timing of the snow moving up all the games were postponed early Monday morning.

Teams in Shenandoah County were allowed to practice from 10 a.m.-noon. Rinker said that the swim team, which has six swimmers in the state meet, were the only ones to practice. Hiserman said the boys basketball team, the wrestling team and the swim team, which has 16 participating in the state meet, held practice on Monday morning.

The weather could affect the state wrestling and swim meets scheduled for this weekend. The Virginia High School League sent out a news release on Monday morning reminding schools of the inclement weather policies for the state swimming and diving championships, which are scheduled for Thursday, Friday and Saturday in Christiansburg. The Group 4A meet is scheduled for Thursday, 3A meet is Friday and the 2A meet is Saturday. If more than half the teams are able to make it, the meets will be held and count as a state meet. There is the possibility the meets could get pushed back and could be held on Sunday.

The state wrestling meet is scheduled for Friday and Saturday in Salem, which is expected to get an even bigger snowfall than the Shenandoah Valley.

Strasburg’s boys basketball team plays Stonewall Jackson in the Conference 35 quarterfinals. Hiserman said his team was hit pretty hard last week with players being out sick, and the extra day off could help them.

“It might help a little bit, it might give them a little more time to get some energy back,” Hiserman said. “Obviously when they get this stuff, they get drained energy-wise. Hopefully we can get a little bit of conditioning back in the next day or two, anyway.”

Contact staff writer Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 168, or tkeeler@nvdaily.com