MIAA officially cancels spring schedule
By LORENZO RECUPERO
The Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletics Association (MIAA) announced the cancellation of the 2019-2020 spring high school sports season Friday.
Here’s the official statement released on their website:
“In accordance with Governor Charles Baker’s announcement Tuesday that Massachusetts schools will be closed to in person learning for the remainder of the school year, the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) regretfully has cancelled all spring sports and spring tournaments.
Today’s decision by the MIAA Board of Directors was difficult, disappointing, and one that was deferred for several weeks as Association staff, Association members from the Tournament Management Committee (TMC) and the Board worked aggressively to construct optional structures to save the opportunity for our MIAA 80,000 student-athletes to enjoy a spring season.
Despite this disheartening but unavoidable action, it is paramount to applaud our constituents, principals, athletic directors, coaches and student-athletes for their positive power of example and cooperation during this unprecedented crisis. The “life lessons” inherent in the games we play will be our resiliency to provide mental and physical strength to focus on the discipline and teamwork to make a difference in the challenging chapters in the Game of Life. #OneTeamOneMIAA. Stay Well.”
The MIAA’s decision to cancel high school sports was inevitable once Governor Baker announced all Mass. schools would close for the remainder of the academic year but waiting for the news wasn’t nearly as tough actually as getting it.
“We knew it was coming. We knew [following the governor’s announcement] that it wasn’t going to happen,” said Everett High School Athletic Director, Tammy Turner of the 2019-2020 spring season. “I’m devastated for all the athletes, especially the seniors. I think they were hopeful to play, but once the Governor came in it devastated them. It became more than just sports at that point,” said Turner.
As the focus now shifts to September and next school year, there’s still no clarity on how sports will be conducted then.
For now, Turner is committed to helping the outgoing athletes get a proper sendoff while getting the sports program back up and running as guided for next season.
“If there’s anything we can do, we are doing to do it,” said Turner, who is already in talks with city and school officials to try and find a way to honor the senior athletes who won’t get their last chance to dawn Everett crimson.
Carolanne Cardinale, a recent UMASS track program commit who excels with the javelin, was stripped of her final sports season for the Crimson Tide but is remaining positive although the future of what sports for her and all athletes alike looks unclear.
“I’m sad about everything and not being able to compete on the track, it’s been my thing for four years,” said Cardinale, who holds Everett’s all-time school record with 113 feet and 7 inches but hasn’t tossed a javelin all spring.
Cardinale plans to stay active at home and wait for what college sports will look like for her in the fall. “It’s challenging working out on your own from home, but it’s all about staying in the right mindset,” she said.
Unfortunately for Cardinale and all high school athletes, the waiting game for when and how the field of play will be opened again is just beginning.