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Schools of Thought: Weather hampers tourney schedule

December 31, 2012
By MIKE ZUMMO ( , The Leader Herald

I guess Mother Nature isn't a fan of holiday basketball tournaments because she did everything she could to make sure none of them ended.

Well, not everything she could.

The Mayfield girls basketball team managed to sneak their tournament in between the snowflakes by doing what no others in the area did. They started their tournament immediately after Christmas, playing their opening-round games on Dec. 26 before Wednesday night's snowfall became significant.

That storm - named Euclid - took care of Thursday's slate by wiping out every game on the schedule, forcing everything to Friday and Saturday.

Friday turned out to be the best day of the week. There was no bad weather and all the games got in. I guess Mother Nature was taking a nap before sending Freyr - who thinks of these names? - after us.

That brings me to this. Why did The Weather Channel decide we need to name snowstorms? We're used to snow here. I admit I am far more hardened to snowfall now than I was when I moved up here six years ago from downstate. But still, an incoming snowstorm doesn't evoke the same emotions as an incoming hurricane. It's just a fact of life in the Northeast. It's winter. It's going to snow whether we like it or not, and because of that, not every snow flurry deserves a name. When 2 feet of snow are dropped on Miami, then come talk to me about names.

Anyway, back to Freyr.

He - it is a "he," right? - certainly had an effect, causing another wave of cancellations Saturday. Most of the tournaments were wiped out. Several of the games scheduled for Amsterdam's College Showcase went off, but since Freyr convinced Kingston to stay home, the Lady Rams spent Saturday watching a bunch of out-of-area teams play on their court.

Northville did something interesting. The consolation game between Duanesburg and Galway was played at 1 p.m., but the championship game, which was scheduled for 3 p.m., was postponed until Saturday. I'm surprised the whole thing wasn't moved to Saturday. From what I could find, both Galway and Duanesburg are free Saturday so to split it up didn't make sense.

Then there was Canajoharie. That school district was downright defiant. Freyr's snowfall didn't keep the Cougars and Sir Bills from tipping off at Canajoharie High School. The round-robin tournament had already lost one day. I suppose they didn't want to lose a second and Johnstown's trip was less than 20 miles, making the drive manageable on snowy roads.

Proximity didn't help the Gloversville tournament and its three local teams. Those games were postponed by early afternoon Saturday and haven't been rescheduled yet.

As of this writing, few of the postponed tournament games have been rescheduled. I'm sure we'll hear more of that as school goes back into session Wednesday. So far, only two are known. Canajoharie plans to finish its tournament Wednesday against Schoharie and Northville will wrap things up three days after that.

For now, Mother Nature can snicker at her victory, at least until the tournament games are made up. While area athletic directors are figuring that out, she will decide where to send Gandolf. Apparently, he is the next snowstorm.



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