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Washout: Pioneers will wait until June for home opener

Powell Pioneers head coach Mike Jameson would love for his team to be able to play a game. Heck, the third-year skipper would love to be able to practice outside.

“It’s been a challenge,” Jameson said of recent weather conditions that forced the team to declare a rainout for both its scheduled home opener on May 21 and the team’s first conference doubleheader against Lovell, which was to have taken place Tuesday night.

The May 21 games against the Billings Halos are likely lost from the schedule. No makeup date has been announced yet for the team’s home doubleheader with Lovell.

“We don’t have a lot of free dates during the summer,” Jameson said. “So trying to sit down and find another date we have in common (with the Halos) is probably too tough. We’ll have to reschedule the Lovell games though, because those count in the conference standings.”

The Pioneers haven’t played since May 14, when the team swept a mixed doubleheader against Miles City and the Halos. Five of the squad’s nine scheduled games so far this season have become victims of the elements. Powell’s next scheduled home games aren’t until June 7, when the team hopes to play a twinbill with the Sheridan Troopers.

The two weeks could be needed to dry out conditions on the Pioneers’ field. At midday Tuesday, a few hours before the team’s scheduled first pitch against Lovell, the facility’s infield more closely resembled a giant red-clay mud puddle. Excess water was also beginning to collect in both the outfield grass and along both foul lines, indicating ground that has reached its saturation point.

The next scheduled action for the Powell Pioneers is Saturday, when the team is supposed to open play in the Billings Memorial Day tournament against Lewistown, Mont., and the Casper Drillers. With higher rain totals and some localized flooding in the Billings area, however, Jameson admits he’s not certain the tournament will run as scheduled.

“We’re hoping to get out and play some baseball,” Jameson said.

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