Gas Could Lighten Travel for School Sports

The high cost of gasoline has some schools in Vermont considering limiting the distance sports teams can travel for non-league games.

Michael O'Day, director of student activities at South Burlington schools, said Friday the school board has not told him to cut long trips or the amount of games played. However, he said he is closely monitoring mounting gas bills and the effects on his budget.

"It comes down to budget - bottom line," O'Day said. "Is it affordable for us to continue to do what we're doing?"

South Burlington's fall athletics include football, soccer, field hockey, cross-country running and cheerleading. Most away games are played in Chittenden County and the surrounding area, but many are played 2-3 hours away in Rutland and Bennington.

O'Day said league games in those places could not be eliminated without a reconfiguration of the league. Non-league games, or exhibitions, are the ones being evaluated.

O'Day said non-league games add value to the program because of the high-level of competition faced, but that has to be balanced by what is financially feasible.