Coaches waiting as Isidore approaches

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 27, 2002

[09/25/02]Coaches at St. Aloysius and Porters Chapel Academy may have to study The Weather Channel as closely as they study game film this week.

Both the Flashes and Eagles are scheduled to play games in south Mississippi Friday night, right along the track Tropical Storm Isidore is expected to take through the state.

The storm, expected to strengthen back into a powerful hurricane before it makes landfall Thursday evening along the southeastern Louisiana coast, could make travel treacherous and cause schools in the area to postpone some games.

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The storm is forecast to pass through Mississippi late Thursday night and early Friday morning, meaning it could be well out of the area by Friday night.

Or it could linger in the Gulf of Mexico, delaying its landfall until Friday afternoon or evening. The storm has been tough for forecasters to predict, and school officials are taking a wait-and-see approach before making a decision on Friday night’s games.

“I don’t have any control over it. We’re going to prepare like we’re going to play. It’ll be just like any week of practice,” said PCA coach Bubba Mims, whose team is scheduled to face Presbyterian Christian in Columbia. “If it’s there and it’s threatening lives, we sure don’t want to subject our students to harm.”

Like Mims, St. Al coach Jim Taylor said he was preparing for Friday’s game at Bogue Chitto.

“We’ll let the good lord take care of the weather. It’s going to take a lot of doing before it gets to that,” Taylor said of a possible postponement.

Vicksburg High is scheduled to play at Northwest Rankin and Warren Central is home against Forest Hill. Vicksburg Warren athletic director Lum Wright Jr. said he would try to reschedule any postponed games for Saturday.

“The only thing that would stop us from playing is high winds and lightning,” Wright said. “If it came to (postponing), we would do everything in our power to play on Saturday.”

Flooding could also cause problems if it prevents fans from getting to games.

Wright, Mims and Taylor all said they would talk with officials at the other schools before reaching a final decision.

“We wouldn’t do anything that would harm or hinder our kids or our community,” Wright said.

If any games are postponed, it wouldn’t be until Thursday at the earliest, and possibly even as late as Friday afternoon.