Iced Out

Winter sports championships get postponed.


Art by Sophia Chrysanthakopoulos

This past February, Seattle had a huge and semi-unexpected snow break. The entire city was buried in white, virtually shutting everything down— the roads, workplaces, and schools. Now for a lot of us, this snow break was a great time to catch up on sleep, binge-watch Netflix, read a good book, and hang out with friends and family. On the other hand, our Garfield winter sports teams unfortunately had to postpone practices, meets and games due to the frigid weather. To combat the snow many of our athletes found themselves going above and beyond to make the best out of this ‘slippery slope’ of a situation.

The womens basketball team had to postpone some of their games, but in spite of the weather, their rank and ability to go to the playoffs wasn’t affected according to Garfield senior and varsity player Jayla Howard.

“For us it didn’t really matter because we were already ranked number one in Metro so we already had a spot, unlike some other teams who had to play to get a spot,” Howard said.

While the snow didn’t necessarily deter the fact that the girls would make it to the playoffs, without the team being able to practice the girls were thrown off of their usual routine and conditioning.

“It definitely affected us a lot because we missed a whole week of practice so when we came back we looked and played really bad. We forgot some of our plays and we were also not in shape so when we played we didn’t look like the Garfield girls that usually come out to play together and execute,” said senior varsity player Sam Tolliver.

Even with the inches of snow blanketing the city, the womens basketball team stayed committed to their craft and ventured elsewhere to practice and work out.

“We ended up having to go to the gym on our own time because we couldn’t practice at the school because they wouldn’t let us,” Howard said.

It is a difficult thing to participate in a team sport when you have to go days without practicing with your teammates. Chemistry is really important in many athletics and even an absence of a few days can throw the team off of their game.

“The snow delay was bad for us as a team just because we couldn’t work on things that we needed to work on as a team and get shots up but for me it was good because I got to sleep in,” Tolliver said.

The Lady Bulldogs weren’t the only one affected by the mini blizzard. Our mens swim and dive team had similar issues with their meets and practices.

“Snow days really messed with our practice schedules, especially with our practices already being limited to around an hour or so and being moved to the Rainier Beach Pool,” said Garfield high school senior Michael Duan. “Sadly the district meet was cancelled, so a lot of swimmers had an earlier end to their season.

“If we were lucky and the roads were clear enough, we would occasionally have a practice held. A lot of swimmers also went to club team practices like SMAC to get ready.”

For some of the athletes, although they worked hard, the snow wound up cutting some athletes’ seasons short because they couldn’t compete due to meets getting postponed.

“A few practices were cancelled because of snow days, but the main effect was that Districts were cancelled,” said sophomore swimmer Yatin Kukreja. “This meant that after Metros, the season was done for the vast majority of the team. This also meant that some of our swimmers we were expecting to make state didn’t get that chance.”

Similar to the womens basketball team, while meets and practices were delayed or postponed the season still managed to wrap up on time.

“I’m pretty sure the swim season finished as scheduled and wasn’t delayed,” Kukreja said. “Over the snow break, our team essentially had to wait it out, and hope for the best. Some people tried to swim on their own at pools that were open, but a lot of practices were cancelled due to pools being closed.”

With that said, the snow was fun to look at and a great excuse to take a break from school and other things. But for many of our athletes, the snow break had lost a chunk of their season.