Heat wave prompts postponement of VCSC outdoors sports

Aug. 22—The forecast of temperatures in the mid- to upper-90s this week, along with 100-plus degree heat indexes, led the Vigo County School Corp. to postpone its schools' outdoor athletic events through Thursday.

Indoor sports, volleyball in particular, remain on the schedule.

As for Friday's practices and games, a VCSC post on its Facebook page Monday evening said, "We will reevaluate Friday practices and contests later in the week."

Wabash Valley high schools also have rescheduled many of their outdoor sports events.

The VCSC issued an updated plan Tuesday afternoon for the midweek sports activities by outdoor fall sports teams. The revised plan calls for later-in-the-day practices, and those can begin at 7 p.m., pending heat index readings. Heat index readings will be taken periodically by the athletic trainers at each site, according to a VCSC news release.

Morning practices will be permitted to take advantage of cooler temperatures. The VCSC also recommends teams have alternate plans for indoor practices, weight training or game-film reviews, if the heat indexes are too high.

Practices for Vigo schools' outdoor sports Tuesday were allowed between 6:30 a.m. and 7:30 a.m.

"We're having to be creative," Terre Haute South Athletic Director Ed Jarvis said Tuesday morning of practice arrangements. Jarvis was working Tuesday on rescheduling as many of this week's postponed events as possible.

As of Tuesday morning, kickoff time will be 7:30 p.m. for South's varsity football game at Floyd Central on Friday, 30 minutes later than originally scheduled, Jarvis said.

West Vigo's kickoff against visiting Parke Heritage on Friday remains 7 p.m., Vikings Athletic Director Kenny Pearson said Tuesday, "but we will reevaluate on Wednesday or Thursday."

Also Friday, Terre Haute North is scheduled to play Crispus Attucks at Indianapolis Broad Ripple High School, starting at 7:30 p.m.

This week, South's athletic department posted the Vigo County School Corporation's "Heat Protocol" which includes guidelines for high heat indexes. Those include no outside practices when the heat index is 110 degrees or higher.

The Indiana High School Athletic Association issued a reminder at the start of fall practices to schools, touching on the signs of heat stroke and heat illness, IHSAA sports information director Jason Wille said Tuesday.

IHSAA guidelines are available online at, Wille said.

Wille added that under IHSAA rules, "every coach in every member school must complete several online education courses through [the National Federation of State High School Associations website], one of which is Heat Illness Prevention."

The National Weather Service issued a heat advisory (for heat indexes up to 100 degrees) to be in effect until 8 a.m. Wednesday, followed by an excessive heat warning (with "dangerously hot conditions with heat index values up to 111 expected") through Friday.

The NWS forecast for Tuesday called for a high of 93 with a heat index of up to 107. Wednesday's high temperatures is forecast to climb 96 with a heat index of 110, while Thursday's high temperature is expected to hit 100 and Friday's near 96, before cooling down to 84 on Saturday and 80 on Sunday.

Across the Valley, heat-related changes also include the postponement of Sullivan High School's annual Chad Smith Scholarship Invitational cross country meet, originally scheduled for 6 p.m. Thursday. That nine-team event has been rescheduled for Sept. 13.

Sullivan Athletic Director Zach Whitkanack said the heat advisory caused the postponement.

Northview plays host to Greencastle in football Friday, and kickoff time remains 7 p.m., Knights Athletic Director Scott Buell said Tuesday. "But we will be monitoring the situation," he added. Likewise, Sullivan's Friday football game at South Vermillion still has a 7 p.m. kickoff time, Wildcats Athletic Director Tim Terry said Tuesday.

Other unchanged Valley prep football game times include Riverton Parke at Carroll-Flora (still 7:30 p.m.), Panthers AD Charlie Martin said Tuesday.

Other heat-related high school sports schedule changes reported to the Tribune-Star include:

—In Illinois, Marshall's Friday football game at Trenton Wesclin has been rescheduled for 7 p.m. CDT Saturday.

—Terre Haute North's girls soccer game at Evansville North on Thursday has been rescheduled for Sept. 26.

—North Central has delayed the kickoff time for Friday's home football game against North Daviess to 8 p.m. It was originally scheduled to start at 7 p.m. "We are moving game back due to heat," Trent Olson, North Central's athletic director, confirmed Monday afternoon.

—Kickoff time for Dugger's football game Friday at Traders Point Christian School in Whitestown has been delayed until 7:30 p.m., Bulldogs AD Levi Lumm said Tuesday.

—The Greene County Invitational cross country meet, originally scheduled for 5 p.m. Thursday at White River Valley, has been canceled because of the heat, said WRV Athletic Director Nate O'Neall.

—The Bedford North Lawrence Scott Hiles Invitational cross country meet, originally scheduled for Monday, has been postponed because of the heat and rescheduled for Tuesday, Aug. 29, said BNL Athletic Director Jeff Callahan. The field includes Linton.

Mark Bennett can be reached at 812-231-4377 or