Air Travel Chaos Forces High School Athletes To Drive 12 Hours


An impromptu caravan manufactured its way down Interstate 5 on Monday night.

In the course of the working day, as Bay Location substantial college basketball and soccer groups located out their flights had been canceled, teams packed into vehicles, vans and buses and built their way to Southern California or outside of to compete in tournaments.

Tournament play among Christmas and New 12 months is popular in significant school athletics. It is a chance for teams to bond, make friendships and face competitiveness from out of the region, rather of squaring off versus the same neighborhood opponents once again and yet again, but far more than a number of Bay Area universities experienced their programs impacted by the tsunami of canceled flights.

7 of the boys basketball groups in the East Bay Athletic League (EBAL), the strongest league in the Bay Spot this yr, ended up playing in tournaments in Southern California. 

San Ramon Valley was intended to get Southwest flight 3540 from San Jose to Ontario on Monday, but the Wolves’ flight was canceled even though they had been waiting at the airport. They packed up the cars and trucks, created a end at an In-N-Out Burger along the way and arrived in Southern California in the early hours of Tuesday morning.

Riordan guard King-Njhsanni Wilhite (3) drives on San Ramon Valley forward Seamus Deely (15) and guard Luke Isaak (24) throughout the first quarter of the Crusaders’ 69-63 gain about the Wolves in a non-league basketball match. | Ethan Kassel/The Normal

Other teams experienced very similar activities. California Substantial head mentor Steve Ohlmeyer’s staff ultimately built its way to Orange County’s Tustin in time for a Tuesday evening recreation, with most earning the drive on Monday night after Southwest flight 1251 from Oakland to Burbank, scheduled for Tuesday morning, was scrapped. A few of Ohlmeyer’s gamers couldn’t make the travel, but identified a flight on Tuesday morning by means of low-price Breeze Airways from SFO to San Bernardino.

Read through Extra: ‘Santa’ Misses Christmas Stuck in San Jose Many thanks to Southwest

The St. Ignatius soccer teams won’t have significantly sympathy for the basketball groups that headed to Southern California. Equally SI’s boys and girls soccer teams acquired that their flights to Phoenix had been canceled, and took I-5 and I-10 to the desert, a 12-hour journey. The Wildcat females salvaged a 1-1 attract against regional facet Hamilton on Tuesday.

The longest journey of all, although, belongs to Seattle personal school power O’Dea, the alma mater of leading NBA Draft pick Paolo Banchero. The Combating Irish boys basketball workforce experienced no usually means of having to San Diego, so they connected up with nearby general public faculty Auburn, who desired a way to The Common at Damien. The groups rented a bus and started the 20-hour trek south. They dropped the Trojans off in Pomona right before continuing on to San Diego.

Dougherty Valley did not consider it straightforward on O’Dea, though. The Preventing Irish arrived at Torrey Pines considerably less than an hour ahead of idea-off and dropped 70-58, with USF commit Ryan Beasley scoring 37 points for the Wildcats. Most of Dougherty Valley’s group drove down on Monday, although some coaches and moms and dads had been among the the fortunate couple to get a flight down on Tuesday.

Tournaments in the Bay Region had been largely spared. Out-of-point out groups, like Seattle Prep, created it to Oakland for the Damian Lillard Classic, but Marin Catholic’s Bambauer Traditional ended up one particular workforce short. Redmond was meant to make the vacation from Washington, but experienced no implies of transportation after Alaska Airlines flight 303 was canceled on Monday. The flight was scheduled for 6:15 a.m., and it was only canceled five hours just before it was scheduled to acquire off.

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Most of Alaska’s flights to the Bay Region this 7 days were unimpacted, but they were as well total to accommodate the Mustangs’ touring celebration. Alaska could not offer you them a flight until Wednesday at midday. There was an solution to fly to Redding early Tuesday morning, but that would have necessitated a 4-hour travel.

“We had been incredibly bummed not to make it,” Redmond head mentor Todd Rubin said.

The match proceeded with 15 teams alternatively of 16. A single group was supplied a bye just about every working day in its place, very similar to some of the previous-minute scheduling adjustments that were being built in December of 2021 in response to Covid breakouts. Arcata, who was meant to engage in Huntington Park on Monday, scrimmaged Marin Catholic’s JV staff.

Alaska Airlines is urging travellers to test the status of their flight just before boarding listed here.

A Southwest Airways spokesperson urged travellers to use this website link to look at flight standing and said: “We had been fully staffed and prepared for the approaching getaway weekend when the significant temperature swept across the continent, in which Southwest is the major provider in 23 of the top 25 vacation marketplaces in the U.S. These operational problems compelled day-to-day alterations to our flight agenda at a quantity and magnitude that nonetheless has the equipment our groups use to recover the airline working at ability.”


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