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El Pasoans brave cold temperatures for outdoor sports
By: Stacey Welsh
EL PASO, Texas -- After unseasonably warm weather Thursday, sports teams and fans were forced to brave cold temperatures during tournaments Saturday.
Hundreds warmed the bleachers for a softball tournament at Northeast Regional Park and the Henry Stokes Little Bowl Youth Football Championships at Austin High School.
"I wore seven layers, thermals and everything," Lower Valley resident Lilly Barraza said.
"It's good right now, they're winning. Now, if they were losing, it wouldn't be good," East El Paso resident Claude Collins said of his grandson's football team.
Temperatures were in the 30 degrees Saturday, compared to temperatures in the 70 degrees Thursday.
Some sports fans told KFOX14 they wanted to have a warm drink in hand to get through the afternoon.
"I got hot chocolate. It's really cold, so I put on three layers of clothes," East El Paso resident Nevaeh Collins said.
Saturday's championships mark the end of the season for the youth players.
"Football is an outdoor sport, so we need to be mentally strong and ignore the weather. We're doing the best we can to keep them focused and playing the game of football," Horizon Falcons coach Max Mendival said.
"Youth football in El Paso is big. Parents come out here and support their teams, and there's a lot of good athletes out here in El Paso," Mendival said.
Some said the chill only set in after the game ended.
"We were watching the game, so it was too exciting. We didn't even feel it until we came down from the stairs," East El Paso resident Betty Enriquez said.
"When it was warm it was good. Now it's cold. I don't like cold weather. You've just got to dress for it and deal with it," Claude Collins said.