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High school sports officials stay vigilant amidst potential threat of Hurricane Lee


Sep 13, 2023

Last Friday, the football game was canceled due to a thunderstorm. This Saturday, all high school events may be canceled due to the hurricane. Welcome to the world of bizarre weather that a high school athletic director must navigate.

Rich Drummond, the athletic director at Windham High School, expressed his concerns about the unpredictable weather. He mentioned that the summer and early fall have been filled with less than ideal conditions. Drummond, along with many other athletic directors, had to make the tough decision to evacuate the football stadium last Friday when lightning posed a threat. The game was resumed on Saturday, with the final quarter being played. Windham emerged as the victorious team with a score of 35-6. Drummond noted that this was the first time in his 24-year career as athletic director that a football game had been suspended.

Category 3 Hurricane Lee is currently making its way up the Atlantic coast. Although it is expected to weaken to a tropical depression, it will still have a significant impact on Maine, with effects predicted to be felt on Saturday. Despite the looming threat, Tim Speer, the athletic director at Gorham, is hoping to proceed with scheduled events on Thursday and Friday. However, the continuous rainfall throughout the fall sports season has further complicated matters. Drummond, after viewing the Doppler radar on Tuesday, expected a brief period of rain after school. However, the rain persisted from 2 to 6 to 7, causing significant disruptions. Drummond mentioned that dealing with unpredictable weather is a major part of their job, as they constantly try to outdo Mother Nature, even though it can be challenging at times.

Speer has already taken precautions by rescheduling Gorham’s girls soccer game against Windham from Wednesday to Thursday due to the predicted rain. Additionally, the Southern Maine Classic cross country meet, originally scheduled for Saturday, has been postponed until Monday.

Maine residents have been urged to take necessary precautions as the hurricane approaches. Strong winds, heavy rain, and coastal flooding are expected on Saturday, with the possibility of power outages caused by fallen trees. Wind gusts ranging from 40 to 60 mph are anticipated along the coast. The weight of completely covered leaves can make trees unstable, especially when the ground is already saturated. Inland flash flooding also poses a threat.

As the unpredictable weather continues to impact high school events, athletic directors like Drummond and Speer are tasked with navigating through these challenging conditions and making the best decisions for the safety and well-being of their athletes and spectators.

By Editor

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