Coaches hopeful for completion, start of athletic seasons

High school teams wait three weeks to resume
Posted at 6:49 AM, Nov 17, 2020
Coaches hopeful for completion, start of athletic seasons

High school athletes and coaches are aware of the unknown that comes with the current times, but the latest news that they are are being suspended is still hard to hear.

"First reaction was disappointment," Wyoming boys basketball coach Thom Vander Klay said.

"Fiist off I was thinking of the seniors," South Christian football coach Danny Brown added. "It's been a roller coaster for those kids."

The South Christian football team thought it would be practicing Monday in preparation for a division four regional championship game against Edwardsburg.

"We have got so many kids that were on the basketball team last year that got shut down," Brown said. "Those core group of eight or nine guys, you wait your whole life to be a South Christian football or basketball player and they've had it ripped away twice."

Boys basketball was one of the sports originally stopped back in March during the first shutdown that occurred just before the district finals were set to take place. Monday was supposed to be the first practice of the new season.

"You are ready to go and the way last season ended there is just so much excitement about getting back on the floor for myself and the kids and the parents," Vander Klay said. "Just a lot of disappointment among guys that have been really getting ready to play for a long time, it finally looked like we were going to be able to do something, and we can't."

Teams will only be able to to meet virtually for at least the next three weeks.

South Christian could still game plan for its regional final over video chat.

"I don't even know if preparing for Edwardsburg is really the most important thing right now," Brown said. "I think it's staying connected with the kids. The unique thing about this is any given situation these kids would come up to we would have a way to connect with them, now with this COVID, quarantining and staying away form people we can't call them in have a meeting and do a fun activity."

While there are no guarantees that high school sports will resume in three weeks, the Michigan High School Athletic Association says it is determined to finish the fall season in 2020 and have a winter sports season.

"At the end of the day if we don't have fans, if we don't have spectators, I'm sure parents would be willing to give up games they can watch it on NFHS or whatever,"Brown said. "Let's just give the kids an opportunity to finish the season."

"I am very hopeful that we come back the eighth and that is when we get going so that is our plan," Vander Klay added. "But we are also flexible enough to know that if that doesn't work than we'll be ready the next, the next week or in January, whenever we can go."