The Illinois High School Association (IHSA) announced on April 21 its decision to cancel all spring state tournaments.
The decision to cancel the spring sports seasons came after Governor J.B. Pritzker announced on April 17 that all Illinois high schools will complete their 2019-20 school term from home via e-learning.
“We support the decision by Governor Pritzker and given the logistics, we simply felt we could not conduct state tournaments that meet the expectations of our member schools this spring,” IHSA Executive Director Craig Anderson said in a statement. “As disappointing as it may be for students, it is the right decision for their health and safety, as well as for the health and safety of the general public, as we cope with this unprecedented pandemic.”
The spring sports seasons include badminton, boys gymnastics, bass fishing, boys and girls track and field, boys and girls water polo, girls soccer, boys tennis, boys and girls lacrosse, boys volleyball, baseball and softball.
The IHSA announced on March 12 that it had canceled the remaining winter sports playoffs, including boys basketball.
In the month-plus since, the spring sports season was on hold as high school athletes and coaches across the state waited on a final decision.
In the April 21 decision, summer contact days for all sports are on hiatus as well. If the state government and medical leaders indicate such gatherings are safe, the IHSA expressed willingness to reconsider how much summer contact might be conducted and whether opportunities for schools to conduct some kind of spring athletic events might occur.
“Once it is determined safe to return, we will provide a detailed outline to our schools on the plan for summer contact days and possibly some kind of spring athletic events,” Anderson said in the statement. “Including if the number of days and dates that coaches can meet with athletes has been altered. At this point though, all that is dependent upon the state government and medical leaders giving the go-ahead for such.”
Stay tuned this week and in next week’s Beverly Review for all the updates concerning the canceled spring sports seasons.