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Basketball teams got to be ready weather or not

Published: Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2014 2:14 p.m. CDT

I remember the days well, sitting around the radio waiting for the big announcement of having a snow day. I still remember the excitement in my daughters’ eyes when they get the word at home. Maybe a little too much excitement, if you ask me. The only thing different these days is the news comes via the ease of a BCR Text Alert or a click onto the Internet.

I’ll have to tell you kids you still don’t have anything on us old kids, the ones of who lived through the blizzard of ‘79. Now, those were snow days!

Times change as you get older and trudge to work no matter what the weather and how cold it is out there, polar vortex or not. However, the weather can certainly put the chill on a basketball team and coaches.

I am finding that out this year with our girls team at Princeton High School, that I coach. In the past nine calendar days, we have had one full practice, one junior varsity game and two varsity games. We’ve also had one game postponed, three practices canceled and two shortened.

Other area coaches share the same sentiments, unable to practice with their teams on snow days, hoping their kids get together on their own, to shoot and play.

“We certainly have had a disruption to our routine and rhythm,” St. Bede girls coach Tom McGunnigal said. “At this time of the year we have become pretty set in how we rotate and what we do through our lineup. We are definitely missing having the ball in our hands but I’m sure that many, if not all, of the girls are getting to the Y to get some shooting in.

“We typically have not had practice when school is out. So these extra days of rest will come in handy when I have to maybe drop a Sunday practice in the future.”

Hall boys coach Mike Filippini said he hasn’t seen his team since they left the locker room at Kewanee Friday.

“Can’t practice if we don’t have school. Really gonna be an issue this week cause we play No. 1 Rockridge on Friday with only two days to prepare instead of four. I’m sure every team in northern Illinois is dealing with it, so it’s not like some teams have an advantage over others,” he said.

Bureau Valley boys coach Jason Marquis said he’s going stir crazy not getting to be in gym with kids.

“Most teams are in same boat as us so it is no excuse. We need to make the most of the time we do have, and our captains are doing a nice job of making sure that happens,” he said.

Bureau Valley girls coach Tiffany Gonigam said the weather has certainly made the end of the season very busy with seven games in the next 11 days, which she said is unusual getting ready for regionals. However, in a way, Gonigam said, the delay has helped to recharge some batteries.

“The kids seem to be up to the challenge and in a way it has allowed them time to rest and they are fresh. Sometimes they get to where they are ready for the next season and for basketball to be done, but their days off seem to have kept them focused and motivated,” she said.

Super picks: I have assembled a group of our local football experts for their Super Bowl predictions. It seems to be a unanimous vote of confidence for the Broncos.

Dan Foes (PHS sophomore football coach): Denver 38-24.

Brent Jamison (BCR Correspondent): Denver 27-24.

Jesse Snyder (PHS varsity football coach): Denver 31-27.

Jesse Brandt (PHS AD, boys basketball coach): Denver 28-17.

Mike Filippini (Hall boys basketball coach, assistant football coach): Denver 27-17.

Tom McGunnigal (St. Bede AD, girls basketball coach): Denver 35-31.

Randy Tieman (Hall boys football coach: Denver 23-17.

Me, I’ll go with the Broncos, too, 27-17.

Kevin Hieronymus is the BCR Sports Editor. Contact him at khieronymus@bcrnews.com.

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