Like most normal years, every high school in America was getting geared up and ready for Spring Sports to begin. Boys tennis, track, swimming, golf, and baseball among a few others were set to fully take off.
However, it is clear by now that this is not a normal year. Due to the spread of COVID-19 across the US, all high school spring sports across the country were abruptly ended and ultimately cancelled.
Our fellow Heritage athletes were taken back and rightfully disappointed to hear this news.
Senior varsity tennis player Connor Zell (12) spoke on behalf of his team and explained what his teams first thoughts were when hearing about the tragic reality of their sport this season.
“Everyone was saying one of two things. You were either disappointed and calling it over almost immediately, or you were trying to brush it off because you still had hope it would pick up and this would blow over fast. I was one of those people in denial,” said Zell.
He went on and talked about his personal goals he had set out to do this season and what he wanted to accomplish.
Zell went on to say, “My biggest goal was to place at NCS this year since I came really close to it last year. It would have been a challenge but I really looked forward to pushing myself. I’m not gonna lie, I was banking on this being my best and most memorable season in high school, but holding a grudge isn’t going to change anything. Even though this would have been my last opportunity for high school, I’ll have other chances to prove myself.”
For others on the team, this recent pandemic will provide motivation, as some look on the bright of things. JV tennis player Mateo Arenas (10) gave his response.
“The way I see it, this gives me an opportunity to push myself harder next year. I’ve got a lot to make up. I had it in my mind to make varsity this year and I’ll try even harder to make it next season,” said Arenas.
Feelings like this are not exclusive to them. It may be good to take solace in the fact that thousands of kids in America are dealing with the same situation together.
There is still hope for those who planned on pursuing their sport past high school. The NCAA, a program designed to recruit high school athletes is granting an extra year of eligibility to seniors in spring sports and, when social distancing protocols are to be lifted, recruiting agents will be sent out ASAP according to the NCSA (Next College Student Athlete).
It is easy to forget in times like these the people that are silently affected by the pandemic of COVID-19. Hopefully in the near future, we’ll see these students and their well loved sports rise again.