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The abrupt halt to the spring sports season

What a wild week it has been. Every professional sports organization halted their season, and the effect has trickled all the way down to local high schools. Thursday afternoon the North Carolina High School Athletic Association called for a shutdown of all spring sports until April 7.

At first, it was hard to wrap the mind around cancelling everything. There have been countless diseases that have come and gone through the country, but it has never affected as much as the COVID-19 Coronavirus has.

It seems to have been a domino affect from Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert, who received a positive result for the virus, and the next day, teammate Donovan Mitchell was diagnosed with it. After that, everything came to a screeching stop.

The NBA and NHL have suspended its seasons, while the NCAA cancelled all of spring sports in its entirety. No NCAA basketball tournament, no College World Series, no College Softball World Series and the PGA tour’s most valuable tournament, The Masters, was postponed.

Spring sports are such a happy time. All the sports are outside in the sunshine of a cool spring evening, and so many folks around Beaufort County and beyond go out to watch their teams perform.

The most hurtful part of all this is the senior student-athletes that are having a good portion of their schedules taken away. The hard work, months of conditioning, lifting and practicing just to play a couple of games and the season come to a halt has to be painful for them and their parents.

Some parents treated the last two days as if it would be the last games or meets their children participated in for their high school career, and that really hit home.

The NCAA has granted an extra year of eligibility for all senior athletes that play a spring sport so they won’t lose out on a year, but that’s not the case for high school athletes.

Some are still seeking college opportunities, and this suspension of spring sports will certainly affect those aspirations.

At the end of the day, it boils down to the safety of the athlete, fans and coaches that attend these events. Whether it’s blown out of proportion or not, it truly is a better-safe-than-sorry scenario.

The disease is highly contagious, and has become a pandemic that spreaded globally at this point. The right decisions are being made, even if we don’t like them.

Wash your hands, don’t touch your face and put an effort into stopping the spread before it gets out of hand. We need sports back in our lives as quickly as we can get them, so play a part in getting them back sooner than expected.