EAST LANSING, Mich. (WTVG) - The Michigan High School Athletic Association announced Friday that it has canceled the remainder of the 2019-20 winter sports season, along with the spring sports seasons.
The decision comes after Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer closed schools for the remainder of the academic year to help decrease the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus.
According to a press release, this will be first school year in Michigan 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 originally suspended tournaments for its winter sports on March 12. At that point, spring sports had begun practices but not competition.
“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 Governor Whitmer is making courageous decisions to safeguard the people of our state,” MHSAA Executive Director Mark Uyl said.
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 in coming weeks provide guidelines and other information pertinent to this unusual offseason as attention is turned to preparing for Fall 2020.