NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Sports

March 19, 2013

The start of spring before the storm

Sports season begins with threat of snow

(Continued)

If there is a particular type of athlete that is typically unaffected by adverse weather conditions, it is the distance runner. These athletes often have goals in terms of weekly training volume, and snow or rain does not prevent them from logging these miles outside rather than on a treadmill.

Triton track coach Joe Colbert said his distance runners took to the streets of Byfield yesterday afternoon on a 40-degree afternoon.

“Some of our runners were outside, some were inside,” Colbert said. “Distance goes out in all conditions.”

Colbert estimated that 75 percent of his outdoor athletes are carry-overs from the indoor track season. That continuity allows him to pick up the program where he left off last month rather than starting from scratch after the winter season.

“Those who did track in the winter are way ahead than those who didn’t,” Colbert said. “The kids that did it in the winter, they pick up where they left off. The kids who weren’t with us have to get caught up to speed. If they were playing basketball, then they’re in pretty good shape, and they can get right into it.”

The official competitions begin for most sports teams in the first week of April. For sports like baseball and softball that require manicured fields, the preseason goes into the second week of April. The Newburyport baseball team opens April 11, but first, the Clippers will play 10 preseason games.

“I wanted to get in as many scrimmages as possible to find out exactly how good our younger kids are,” Malenfant said. “We have a good core of seniors coming back, but we’ll be missing a solid pitcher in (2012 graduate Brett Fontaine). I scheduled about four to six more scrimmages than normal, and I just hope we can get them in.”

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