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Gym floor effects more then just gym classes

Brendan Sheehan l Associate Editor

As many returning students walked through doors E on the first day of school, a strange notice couldn’t help but to be seen on the old gym doors; “Gym closed. Do not use.”

The bold, capitalized font ensures that students steer clear of the old gym, but many wonder why it is closed in the first place.

Over the summer, the old gym closed due to complications with the new floor installed last spring. With the gym being in an unusable condition, concerns surrounding winter sports and their practicality come into question.

With the closure, the teams have had to work around the schedule of concurring fall sports teams to use the Cage, the school’s new gym. The boys’ basketball team has moved their daily preseason workouts to weekends in order to accommodate the girls’ volleyball team.

The problem during the season arises with the middle school and recreational basketball teams, who use the gym for their games and practices. With middle school and travel league teams sharing this space to practice, finding new places to practice has become necessary for the upcoming season.

“It just becomes a scheduling nightmare in trying to get appropriate gym time for all teams,” said varsity boys’ basketball coach Thomas Smith.

The plan as of right now is to crowd source the elementary and middle school gyms for practices, splitting the time amongst the various teams in each location—which, according to Smith, is not ideal considering the small size of these gyms and the sizes of the teams.

According to middle school basketball team coach Tyler Massar, access to the old gym allows the team to work on full-court component principals such as pressing and press breakers as well as 6 rims to shoot in.

“I think we can attribute some of our success last year at the freshman level to having our own gym to practice in and get the most out of each session,” said Massar.

The rec league houses about 150 members grades one through six, grades five and six playing on the travel team. With several teams trying to get their playing time in, the conditions present challenges.

“At the end of the day it isn’t ideal to use smaller gyms, especially for our rec leagues which is such a huge part of the program,” said Smith.

According to varsity girls’ basketball player junior Megan Donley, the girls’ team offseason practices throughout the year have been rescheduled and cancelled in order to get time within the new gym.

“This is frustrating for the team; however, we adjust to the reality of the situation,” said Donley. “We are a winter sport and technically out of season, so we can at least be thankful for that in the time being.”

Despite curveballs thrown at the basketball program, the teams still have a schedule and several alternative plans that work with the old gym’s unavailability.

“I think we can make it work, despite some of the lack of gym time some of the junior high teams are going to get,” said Thomas. “I’m very hopeful that the floor will be fixed by the time our season starts, and we won’t have to refer to any plan B.”

Despite the tumultuous and complicated outlook on the season, the teams still have optimism and are willing to adapt with the changes that are to come about.

“The CCHS administration and maintenance staff do a great job to ensure athletic teams have the opportunity to be successful,” said Massar. “If it’s not ready to go by the season, we will make the best of our situation at the middle school and be creative in our ways to prepare for the season.”

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