New York High School Sports Association Delays Start, Cancels Fall Championships

New York High School Sports Association Delays Start, Cancels Fall Championships

Mount Sinai sophomore Joseph Spallina powers his way out of the back field against the Wildcats in the D-IV county finals at Stony Brook Nov. 24, 2019. Bill Landon photo

With school districts still to receive new guidance from the state on what education will look like in September, the New York State Public High School Athletic Association has come out early to say the fall sports sports season will start late, and they are cancelling all championships for the 2020 season.

“As the state considers reopening, it is unrealistic to believe athletic seasons can start on Aug. 24 as originally scheduled,” said Paul Harrica, NYSPHSAA president in a release. “The priority will continue to be on the educational process and a return to learning in the safest way possible.”

The start of sports will be delayed until Sept. 21. The cancelling of the championships means seasons will go on as normal and not finish with the regional and state championship. The NYSPHSAA normally hosts 32 championship events across the state each year.

Fall sports normally include boys and girls cross country, football, field hockey, boys and girls volleyball, girls tennis and boys and girls soccer.

Though acknowledging that the COVID-19 pandemic could cause further interruption to fall sports, NYSPHSAA came out with a condensed season plan that includes:

Season I (Winter Sports) Dates: Jan. 4 through March 13; 10 Weeks 

Note: tentative dates sports: basketball (girls and boys), bowling (girls and boys), gymnastics, ice hockey (girls and boys), indoor track and field (girls and boys), skiing (girls and boys), swimming (boys), wrestling and competitive cheer.  

Because of high risk nature of wrestling and competitive cheer, sports may have to be moved to Season II or season III. 

Season II (Fall Sports) Dates: March 1 through May 8; 10 Weeks 

Note: tentative dates sports: football, cross country (girls and boys), field hockey, soccer (girls and boys), swimming (girls), volleyball (girls and boys) and unified bowling. 

Note: Weather will have an impact upon outdoor sports in some parts of the state in March and potentially early April. Girls Tennis moved to Season III. 

Season III (Spring Sports) Dates: April 5 through Jun. 12; 10 Weeks 

Note: tentative dates sports: baseball, softball, golf (girls and boys), lacrosse (girls and boys), tennis (girls and boys), outdoor track and field (girls and boys) and unified basketball.