CHSAA Is Suspending All Spring Sports and Activities–But What About the Athletes?

Photo Credits: Wikimedia Commons

Maya Sheehan, Staff Writer

The afternoon of Thursday, March 12 arrived with a murmur as the news slowly spread, and for many athletes, a sinking feeling set in. The “postponing” of all spring sports seasons due to the coronavirus affected student-athletes on an unprecedented scale. Teams were split, and for some, this meant the preemptive end of an era that offered some of the best memories and connections of high school. The most affected, however, were those seeking scholarships within the sports they play, because it is still unclear exactly how colleges will recruit for future classes with this pandemic blocking teams from playing and there is some worry among students as to what their futures will look like. 

The initial report that spring sports had been canceled spread like wildfire through the school Thursday, March 12, and was the precursor to the cancellation of school. It was, for some, a display of how serious the coronavirus really is, and for others an over-reaction, but it had a big impact on all those participating in spring sports and activities.

For those who participate in spring activities, it was more than just a sport that was lost. “The cancellation of sports affected my bond with my team because now we have to practice individually or over Skype, which makes it difficult to connect and unify as a team,” Cassandra Persichetti (11) said. Persichetti runs track and plays soccer. “It also made me very disappointed that I will be missing an entire season of high school soccer because we can’t get that time or experience back.” 

Mason Ripley, one of Dakota’s lacrosse players, spoke along the same lines of a lost team bond. “It made me sad because the sports that I love were canceled for the season, and I didn’t get to play with my family,” Ripley (10) said. 

Isabella Castañeda, a soccer player, expressed regret for a missed opportunity.  “I have been playing soccer since 6th grade. My freshman and sophomore year did not go well due to the lack of coaching and discipline among the teams I played for. My junior year I didn’t play at all, so this year was really going to be my comeback season, but it’s looking like I will never get that,” Castañeda (12) said. 

The players are apprehensive about college recruitment too. “This could affect recruitment and the ability for students to get scholarships by impeding a student’s ability to practice due to possible quarantine and canceled practices, and hinder the recruiters’ opportunities to go out and watch students,” Persichetti said.

“Recruiters can’t see what players are made of because they can’t even see the talent that is burning through the class of 2020,” Castañeda said. 

Players have mixed feelings about the cancellations.  “I do think it was right that sports were canceled in order to slow the spread of the virus so that hospitals do not exceed their maximum capacity, but I think it should only be temporary so that some of the seasons can still be played,” Persichetti said.

Tanner Fields, a sophomore lacrosse player agrees. “The cancellation of sports was the most responsible thing that could’ve happened,” Fields said.  “Depending on the severity of the spread of covid 19, the season may end up being canceled altogether. However, I have great confidence that our seasons will simply be extended into summer months.” 

Castañeda disagrees. “The cancellation of sports was wrong. We have had many cases of rough colds flying around. But because this virus is destroying the economy, and the economy is the one leg Trump has to stand on for this election, it would not surprise me that politics has something to do with this.”

“I think we should have just played through it,” Ripley said.

As of March 17th, CHSAA released another statement that extended the initial suspension of spring activities, canceled the CHSSA Hall of Fame, and lessened the chance of seniors and all other high school athletes completing their spring season.

Looking into the near future, some athletes don’t have much optimism that they will be able to salvage the tail end of a season. “I’m 95% positive that the rest of the season is going to be canceled. I’m sure they will extend the cancellation of sports to make sure everyone is safe, but for seniors, it sucks because it’s their last year, and they don’t even get to play,” lacrosse player Courtney Smith (10) said. 

“The future of the season is over. I don’t want it to be, but by the looks of things it will only get worse from here,” Castañeda said.  “I loved my team. The majority of us built each other up, and I really wanted to make it a priority of mine that all the younger girls would know what they meant to me by the end of the season. I wouldn’t wish something like this on the worst person in the world.” 

 

 

 

 


All screenshots are taken from the CHSAA official website, chsaanow.com, which can be visited for more information.