EAST LANSING, Mich. — The Michigan High School Athletic Association (MHSAA) has canceled the remainder of the 2019-20 winter and spring sports seasons.
MHSAA said in a press release Friday the move to canceled the sports season were in compliance with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's executive order extending the closure of all public and private K-12 schools and requiring districts to switch to distant learning.
This will be the first school year to not see MHSAA Finals played in multiple sports since 1942-43, when World War II led to the elimination of finals in most sports.
The MHSAA on March 12 suspended its girls and boys basketball, girls gymnastics, boys ice hockey and boys swimming & diving tournaments amid COVID-19 concerns. All activity in all sports was halted March 13.
“We are heartbroken to not be able to provide these opportunities for Michigan’s student-athletes, and especially seniors. We continue to hear from dozens asking us to hold out hope. But safety always must come first, and Gov. Whitmer is making courageous decisions to safeguard the people of our state,” MHSAA Executive Director Mark Uyl said. “We understand as much as anyone how much school sports mean to athletes and their communities. We had ideas and hopes for finishing Winter and Spring and helping bring some sort of normalcy after this long break. But this is the correct decision, and we will play our part in bringing schools and communities together again when the time is right.
“For now, we cannot state strongly enough that all students, staffs and others follow the guidelines established to slow the spread of this virus – we all must do our part.”
Because the five winter sports were not able to conclude with finals, no champions will be awarded in those sports for 2019-20. However, championships won at earlier rounds of those tournaments (District or Regional) will continue to stand.
The MHSAA will provide additional guidelines and other information to this unusual off-season preparations for the fall 2020 season begin.
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