Opinion: Potential loss of sports, activities worries seniors

Laurel Barber | @Lawl_e_20

With COVID-19 being passed around like wildfire, many sports programs decided to end seasons early.

The NBA suspended the season after a Jazz player preliminarily tested positive for the Coronavirus. The NCAA cancelled the winter and spring championships to combat the problem. Both organizations had a very valid reason to end the season, since health comes above sports, but many athletes did not want to see the end so suddenly.

From the NBA to the NCAA to KSHSAA, the ending of many seasons crushed the dreams many hopeful athletes had to be named the top dog.

KSHSAA ended the state basketball tournament after finishing the quarterfinal games. The conclusion of the tournament did not name one team state champions, instead it only left teams upset. The athletes that earned the honor of playing at the state tournament do not want getting there to be the only thing, they want to win.

Schools that remained in the tournament can not ‘name’ themselves the 2019-2020 state champions — No one can.

Most schools in Kansas are closed for at least the next two weeks. With the ending of these classes, many sport teams are not able to practice. This not only hurts the students by keeping them out of the classroom, it also hurts the student-athlete’s drive.

That word after student carries around a lot of weight. Yes, we are students first, but for some of us, the drive to succeed comes from being an athlete. The only reason many students show up and participate in class is because they know that’s how they can continue their sports careers. Without the shove of athletics many kids would not try in class.

As a senior student athlete, not knowing if my last high school game or competition was the basketball state quarterfinal game breaks my heart. Workouts from track coach Roger Alderman were sent to the track athletes to do their best to stay in shape during this time, but running by myself without getting throwing equipment in my hand can only do so much.

I’m hoping the virus passes and things return to normal, but if they don’t, not being able to compete again in a red and blue charger jersey won’t be the end of the world. But there will be an opening that I had no way to close. At this point I have no say in how my last season as a Charger ends. With the cancellation and postponement of everything I may never get to run as a WHS athlete again.

There have been so many unknowns that all of us seniors are in the same boat. The boat we are all in is slowly sinking with all the “lasts” we wanted to experience together — our last prom, last sign out sheet, graduation and even our last practice. Nobody knows if we will get to experience things that we have been looking forward to the last 12 school years.

Of course, it’s possible that the steps taken by society will flatten the curve of the virus and we will be able to safely return to school and activities soon. That’s what we all hope for.

If not, the missed experiences will be a tough pill to swallow.

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