Winter Sports provide another blow to senior athletes


Photo used with permission from Lifetouch

Senior William Margarities takes the floor against Watkins Mill in a game from the 2019-2020 season.

After a long wait and a full virtual season winter sports have officially been cancelled, which provides more news our seniors do not need to hear. I am going to provide a quick timeline here. Mar. 16, – the day that all athletic events were suspended. Apr. 20 – the day that sports were cancelled for the year. Dec. 15 – the day winter sports were cancelled.

Covid-19 has taken away three sports seasons and is threatening more. Officially the 2019-2020 spring and the 2020-2021 summer and fall sports seasons have been called off and it could not be more disappointing for seniors who will never competitively play for their high school ever again. “It is saddening to have both of my sports seasons cancelled, because representing your school as a senior just has a different feel to it,” soccer and basketball player Thomas Jezek said.

The plan as of now is to continue with spring virtual sports and then those of lower risk might get a chance in the spring. SALC and MCPS athletics are working to make these events safe as best as they can. “It is going to be difficult, we are trying to figure out the best possible way to give the seniors one more chance to play but also understand the risk that we are taking,” senior SALC member Brian Rose said.

With MCPS originally planning to play this fall and winter, those athletes had to endure virtual sports and try to bond with new teammates when in reality they will never play again. The finality of the choice is causing the biggest issue among the current senior class. “You assume that this is always a possibility but when I heard that it was definitely over my stomach dropped,” senior basketball center Normand Bayigamba said.

Having this season would be an amazing way to end our weird senior year.”

— Chris Rinaldi

Now, as we are going into January, virtual sports for the spring have started and the hope for a season remains. Coaches and players are planning to be practicing in April and adjusting to the short season. While the optimism remains, the understanding that it could be cancelled also remains. As Covid-19 cases continue to rise and the vaccine not being widely available yet, it is hard to imagine that the season would happen, but there is always a chance. “Having this season would be an amazing way to end our weird senior year. Nothing is better than getting out on that field with my boys,” senior lacrosse midfielder Chris Rinaldi said.

The final decision on what spring sports are allowed will depend on the current risk of playing. For example, if football or basketball were a spring sport they would be deemed unfit to play because of the amount of contact with players from both sides: the risk is just too high. However, sports like volleyball, track, or baseball have been decided to be lower risk sports and ones that could continue if we do have any sports in the spring.

What do you all think about this current proposition? Does it seem to be fair or would there be a better option? Please let me know @[email protected].