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Some athletic fields buried under inches of snow as spring season begins

Athletic fields buried under inches of snow as spring season begins
Athletic fields buried under inches of snow as spring season begins 01:58

GROTON - The start of spring sports is underway but for many cities and towns, last week's nor'easter buried their athletic fields under several inches of snow. Matt Ricard is the Athletic Director for Groton-Dunstable Regional High School. "All seven of our softball and baseball fields are all covered in snow," Ricard said. 

He's been busy setting up whatever he can knowing their sports teams will be weeks behind others whose fields are not covered. "It's very challenging. We have to have all of our teams work out in gyms," Ricard said. "And then we rely on the kindness of our neighbors to use some of their turf facilities that have snow off earlier than the grass fields." 

Matt Caliri works the Bobcat as close to the ground as possible to get the softball and baseball infields cleared. For him it really is a game of inches. "I'm bringing the Bobcat out on the clay part of the softball field. I'll bury it down, leave it about two inches up," Caliri said. "We probably have about eight inches of snow out there, try to remove six inches of it. Hopefully the sun the next few days will melt the rest. We'll have to put some ice melt down."

Bobcat snowblower
Matt Caliri uses a Bobcat to clear snow from an athletic field at Groton-Dunstable Regional High School  CBS Boston

The good news, this time of year the snow tends to melt fast on turf fields. But many grass fields in Western and Central Massachusetts have a long way to go. 

"Two weeks out, everyone else is practicing and these kids are inside the gym throwing baseballs around," Caliri said. 

As for players and coaches, they are managing the best way they know how. "It's not new to them, they are used to it so that helps but after a while it will get frustrating," Ricard said. "It's definitely hard on the coaches and the players." 

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