Sports column – Where are the fans?

Somewhere in the down-time before spring sports, the fighting spirit starts to drop.

Big crowds just haven’t been popular for spring sports in the past years. Both fall and winter sports bring in students, parents, and staff despite the last traces of summer or chilly nights.

Never mind if you think spring sports are blah – a cheerful crowd can even make logistics exciting – but the lack of people comes down to how unfriendly the environment is.

A lot of people don’t know that things were a lot worse for former softball coach Nancy Funari. The varsity team once played at Falcon park, with no dugouts. We had no control over who walked in and out of the field,” Funari said. Because of the tiny bleachers, Funari said parents who came would have to bring their own chairs and shade to watch the games.

Now the playing environment for the team has come a long way, but it’s not to say that it can’t be a lot better. The stands feel too hunched up on both fields, and there isn’t enough shade or room for a concession stand.

The tennis courts are a tragic situation, with only one set of bleachers. There is also no bathroom facilities or drinking fountains close by.

Varsity baseball coach Leonardo Alvarez says it’s difficult for parents to make it to games because of the timing.

“It would be nice to have some sort of shade, and an announcer,” he said. “That would all help.”

Although there is always room for changes in sports programs, it’s the students, parents, and staff that can make them come alive.