The local baseball teams got a cold reception to spring break Monday with a pair of key district matchups getting postponed, while another braved the snow flurries for a lopsided victory.
Plummeting mercury and white flakes falling from the sky caused Walker Valley and Ooltewah, plus Cleveland High and Rhea County, to put off their District 5-AAA battles in hopes of better weather today.
Although more snow flurries and temperatures not expected to get out of the 40s are predicted, the teams will try again today, weather permitting, with game times moved to 5 p.m.
“We will try to play a varsity-only game, starting at 5, but we’re not sure about a start time for Wednesday yet,” related Mustang head coach Joe Shamblin, whose team will host the Owls at Mike Turner Field this evening.
Per 5-AAA bylaws, the teams will travel to Ooltewah Wednesday for a makeup of Monday’s postponed seven-inning affair.
Although it’s just the third week of the young diamond season, the Mustang-Owl series is expected to have a big impact on this year’s 5-AAA race.
Both Walker Valley (7-3), which made a Final Four finish in the TSSAA state tournament last May, and defending district champion Ooltewah (9-2) have won their first four 5-AAA contests.
The Mustangs have swept both McMinn and Rhea counties in district play so far, while the Owls have outscored the Cherokees and Soddy-Daisy 35-4 in their four league outings.
Mother Nature also prevented the action in Evensville last night, so Rhea County will visit Raider Field for a 5 p.m. first pitch this afternoon.
Both teams are looking for their first district victories as the Eagles are 3-3 overall and 0-2 in 5-AAA games, while Cleveland is 2-4 and 0-2, as well.
Meanwhile the one local team to brave the blustery weather, Polk County heated things up with its bats in a 20-1 District 5-AA tangle at Sweetwater.
The two Wildcat squads are slated to square off in Benton at 5 this afternoon to complete the home-and-home series.
Bradley Central (9-3) enjoyed sunshine and temperatures in the 60s while outlasting Knoxville Carter 15-10 in Cocoa Beach, Fla., Monday.
The Bears took on the same Carter squad this morning in the Sunshine State and will play games on Thursday and Friday before heading back north.
The Polk County softball squad is supposed to be traveling to Hixson this afternoon for a game, but area weather conditions may have something to say about that game as well.