Public health and safety issues caused by COVID-19 are playing havoc with planners for the 2020-21 high school sports year.
On Wednesday, the Hawaii High School Athletic Association executive board voted to postpone football, cross country, girls volleyball and cheerleading to January 2021. Normally, those sports are run in the fall.
The reason behind the decision, according to HHSAA executive director Chris Chun, is that that those sports have been classified as moderate- to high-risk of spreading the coronavirus. There has been a huge uptick in COVID-19 cases in the last few weeks.
High school football in Hawaii will not be held this fall due to COVID-19. Football, girls volleyball, cross country and cheerleading has been postponed to at least January. (Photo from Mililani Trojans Football Photos Facebook page).
Air riflery and bowling, two other fall sports, will continue as planned with safety guidelines in place, according to the HHSAA. Official practice for those two sports is scheduled to start Aug. 19.
The HHSAA executive board is made up of voting members of the five Hawaii leagues — the Interscholastic League of Honolulu, the Oahu Interscholastic Association, the Big Island Interscholastic Federation, the Maui Interscholastic League and the Kauai Interscholastic Federation.
“The HHSAA will continue to work with our member leagues in determining where to place these affected sports,” Chun said. “If our state can flatten the curve, hopefully, these sports will be able to be played at some point in the school year.” There is no guarantee that any Hawaii high school sport will be held in January or next spring. It is still possible that air riflery and bowling — if the pandemic numbers get worse in the state — will be canceled.
The HHSAA board’s vote Wednesday came as no surprise. NickAbramo.com opined last week that this decision was likely coming, based on the surge in coronavirus cases.
A similar opinion was published here as far back as May 27.
Now, the whole state will wait and pray and hope that there is a slowdown in COVID-19 cases, so those popular fall and winter sports can be played in January or later.
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