KENNEWICK -- The blanket of snow that covered the Mid-Columbia on Monday was a problem for many Tri-Cities citizens trying to go about their daily business.
Today those same conditions could be a problem for three area football teams preparing for this weekend's state semifinal football games.
"We called it a little early (yesterday). We went inside and watched some film," said Kamiakin coach Scott Biglin, who is preparing the Braves (12-0) for Saturday's 3A semifinal against Capital (12-0) at 1 p.m. at Lampson Stadium. "Monday is a day to give the kids a break. (Today) is going to be interesting."
If snow and ice continues to be a factor, the Kennewick School District might be forced to cancel school as well as any after-school activities. If that happens, the Braves football team would not be permitted to practice anywhere.
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"There is a provision that the athletic director and secondary AD can get together on situations that are unusual -- and I assume this is unusual -- that would call for a special deal," said Kamiakin AD Don Schumacher. "We'll discuss whether it's practical and safe for the kids to practice."
Biglin said the school is looking into alternate practice sites such as the Kamiakin gym or possibly at TRAC in Pasco. But several factors may complicate the issue, including the availability of gym space because of winter sports practices and the cost of securing an off-site indoors location.
Weather aside, Kamiakin is primed and ready for its third semifinal appearance in school history and first since 2006.
"It's funny to talk to these kids. You wouldn't even know they're playing for the semis. Nothing has changed with them," Biglin said. "One kid asked if we were going to practice on Thanksgiving, and the kids scolded him -- 'Of course we're going to practice on Thanksgiving. It's the semis.' "
Connell coach Wayne Riner is in the same boat.
His Eagles team is hitting its stride, having outscored opponents 97-20 through their first two games of the 1A state playoffs.
Connell (11-1), the defending 1A champion, will face Omak (9-3) in the semifinals at 1 p.m. Saturday at Lions Field in Moses Lake.
But Riner feels as though his team could be at a definite disadvantage playing outdoors this weekend while the other semifinal -- Cascade Christian (11-0) vs. Meridian (12-0) -- will be played indoors at the Tacoma Dome, where the state championships will be held the following weekend.
"I don't think that's very fair," Riner said. "They get that one time in the dome, and they can get used to it."
Waitsburg-Prescott (12-0) will play Colfax (11-0) in the 2B semifinals at 1 p.m. Saturday at Martin Stadium in Pullman.
* Jack Millikin; 509-582-1406; firstname.lastname@example.org