LORAS COLLEGE – Living in the midwest snow in the winter months is to be expected, but what about when it comes time to prepare for spring sports such as baseball and softball?
Choosing to go to school in the midwest can be a challenge especially when one decides to play a sport like baseball or softball. The regular season begins in early March here at Loras, but months of preparation must be put in before the team can lineup on the field.
“It’s a spring sport you want to be outside with the grass and the fresh air, it smells good out there with the breeze and the sun so you know people want to be outside yeah it’s not fun practice inside really it sucks,” says senior Danny Fahlgren. Patrick Walsh talks about it from a team mental standpoint, “The biggest challenge is probably staying up as a team.”
The mental element of practicing indoors can often be overlooked, but outfielder Dani Stromert says she’s over it, “I’m not going to be able to get underneath the ball like all the other people do, but I’m used to it now not being able to practice like a normal softball player.” Is there a disadvantage then not being able to do what you normally do outside? “It’s mentally challenge because we get tired of being inside for so long probably a couple months and not really being able to play, I mean we’re playing softball but were not really playing softball,” says sophomore outfielder Jenna Scheer.
“It’s definitely a transition, I have trouble when we go from practicing so long in here to to practicing outdoors,” but it’s not just about the transition from playing indoors to playing outdoors, it’s about the toll it takes on an athletes body. “I think its more of our knees and shins probably hurt a little more running inside just because it’s not a real grass or anything like that and it’s a fake court,” says Walsh. Fahlgren adds, “Running in here is a lot tougher, people complain about shin splints and stuff like that because we’re running on the hard surface. Outside it’s a lot softer you can wear cleats and it gives a little cushion for us.”
Ultimately Thomas Greffly and the other athletes know it’s only a matter of time before the snow melts and the sun shines on a new season, “Everytime you see that temperature go up and the snow start to melt you get that little glimpse of hope and you’re ready to go outside and play.”
Joel is a senior at Loras College and a Dubuque native. Joel is the Producer for SportsZONE, as well as anchor, reporter and commentator for Live Sports. Joel has spent past summers as a sports intern for KCCI-TV in Des Moines and has also interned for the Iowa Cubs video team. Joel has a strong passion for sports and loves to be involved in the community.