Athletes Hold out Hope for Spring Season Reinstatement

Sarah Naughten and Gracie Woidat

On March 13, all California Interscholastic Federation (CIF) spring sports were suspended until April 3, when CIF will make a decision about whether or not they will be able to resume. This, along with mandates issued by the state of California calling for residents to shelter-in-place, has led to the cancellation of all formal after-school athletic practices and games. 

While the announcement was disappointing to many athletes who had just begun their spring-season competition schedule, some are still hopeful for an opportunity to finish out their high school athletic year with at least 1 more shot at a new personal best.  Until they are told otherwise, these dedicated athletes are finding innovative ways to keep up their fitness in order to be ready when sports resume.

“To be honest, there isn’t a lot we can do because we rely a lot on open pool facilities, but because of the coronavirus, most public and school pools have been closed,” said junior swimmer Connie Kim. “So I guess we can stick to daily workouts we can do at home or runs around the neighborhood”

With the Campolindo facilities off limits, including the varsity batting cages, according to senior baseball player Grant Harper, team members are continuing their batting practice independently. “Most guys are just hitting off a tee at home,” said Harper.

The track and field team, with a roster of 115 athletes, has already seen some of its annual highlight-invitationals canceled and opportunities for early-season marks disappear. “I think that overall the team has been struggling,” said junior distance runner Owen Lekki.  Nevertheless, Lekki and a significant number of other runners have been continuing their training and replacing meet days with individual time trials.

In addition to worrying about maintaining fitness, many junior and senior athletes are concerned about the missed opportunities for posting marks that will gain them spots on college teams or even scholarship money.

“I think it is really unfortunate for people that are looking to post marks that will get the attention of college coaches. Unfortunately, I think that will negatively impact how they will be recruited in the future, just simply because for our program, I know we’ve only run a couple of low-key races so far. So we haven’t really had the opportunity for our athletes to perform at their peak,” said distance track coach Andy Lindquist. 

The CIF has yet to make any additional announcement regarding the spring season beyond the May 1 shelter-in-place order recently published by Bay Area regional counties.  There is still the potential for high school sports to resume prior to the end of the school year.

“I am continuing to train by myself however, and hope that races may be put back on later in the season to post times to make colleges take me more seriously. These may be trying times but everyone is going through the same thing and coaches understand that,” said Lekki.