Floyd putting damper on area sporting events; High school, college games likely to get wiped out today


Scattered local athletic events were called off yesterday as Hurricane Floyd moved closer to the area, and numerous others on today's schedule face the same fate.

The Orioles called off last night's and today's games with the Oakland Athletics. The University of Maryland Baltimore County postponed last night's soccer match with Temple, and every event scheduled for Harford County high schools was scratched yesterday and today.

Any public high school sports in the area will be wiped out if the local jurisdictions cancel school today, when the storm is expected to make its biggest impact. Private schools follow the decisions of various jurisdictions or make cancellation decisions independently.

With Baltimore City and Anne Arundel, Carroll and Harford county schools shut down, today's schedule for those systems already is wiped out, and tomorrow's is questionable.

Yesterday, Carroll County postponed the Westminster Invitational cross country meet among several events. No makeup date has been announced.

The Knights Invitational cross country meet scheduled for today at Baybrook Park has been rescheduled for Friday at 3: 30 p.m.

Most systems are adopting a wait-and-see stance toward tomorrow with the hope that varsity football -- which requires a long interval between games -- can be played.

Complicating the scheduling problems is that the Jewish holiday of Yom Kippur falls on Monday.

Bob Wade, supervisor of athletics for Baltimore City schools, said the contingency plan is to play varsity football Saturday and schedule junior varsity football and cross country Monday.

Howard County will hold a teleconference tomorrow among the athletic directors to determine its course.

Generally, colleges had light schedules yesterday and today. In question is a trip to Greenville, N.C., for a soccer tournament this weekend for UMBC and Mount St. Mary's women and a tennis match at the Mount involving Towson today.

Racing at Colonial Downs in New Kent County, Va., is not scheduled for today. Senior vice president Jerry Monahan said: "the weather situation Friday will dictate" whether that day's card will be canceled.

Elsewhere on the East Coast, Hurricane Floyd also jostled the sports calendar.

In Greenville, S.C., the storm forced postponement of yesterday's NHL exhibition game between the Carolina Hurricanes and Atlanta Thrashers.

Travel limitations prevented the Hurricanes from getting to Greenville, S.C. for their game. The game will be played Monday, a spokesman for the arena said.

In Fort Mill, S.C., the Charlotte Knights postponed Game 3 of their Triple-A baseball championship series against Durham. It was rescheduled for tonight.

Hurricane Floyd also forced Jacksonville Jaguars coach Tom Coughlin to cancel practice in preparation for Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers.

Severe weather at the northwest end of the hurricane moved into Charlotte by midday, but the Panthers held practice anyway, working out for nearly two hours at their three-field complex adjacent to the stadium.

North Carolina State practiced inside yesterday in preparation for Saturday's game at No. 1 Florida State. Coach Mike O'Cain hopes conditions today will allow at least a team meeting.

The storm not only forced postponements and cancellations, but also altered travel plans for many teams.

Savannah State's football team scrambled inland to escape Hurricane Floyd. The NCAA Division II Tigers boarded two buses Tuesday for a road trip to Tennessee-Chattanooga, leaving three days early.

The team arrived in Tennessee at about 9: 30 a.m. yesterday, after one of the buses broke down on the 370-mile journey from Savannah to Chattanooga.

The Associated Press contributed to this article.

Pub Date: 9/16/99

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