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Spring sports cancelled in Connecticut due to pandemic – The Collinsville Press
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Spring sports cancelled in Connecticut due to pandemic

The Canton High softball field sits quietly. There won’t be a spring season this year. The CIAC cancelled the 2020 spring season on Tuesday.

CHESHIRE, May 6, 2020 — Spring sports were officially cancelled in Connecticut on Tuesday after Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont announced that all public school facilities would remain closed for the remainder of the school year due to the contagious COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic sweeping the state.

Later in the day, the CIAC confirmed that there would be no athletic competition this spring. The CIAC already cancelled their spring state tournaments on April 23 but had left open the option for some competition in June if schools were allowed to open.

“I know how important it is for so many students and teachers to finish out the school year, and I was holding out hope – particularly for high school seniors – that we’d at least be able to complete the final few weeks, but given the current circumstances and to protect everyone’s safety, it has become clear that it’s just not possible,” Lamont said.

During the initial outbreak, Lamont signed an executive order directing in-person classes at all K-12 public school facilities to be canceled effective March 17. That order was initially set to expire on March 31 but then was extended twice, most recently to May 20.

“The difficult decision to cancel classes for the remainder of the year is based on the health and safety of our students, their families, and our Connecticut communities,” Education Commissioner Miguel Cardona said.

The CIAC said the consideration for any competition in spring sports had always been contingent on the re-opening of schools. “This morning, Gov. Lamont ordered the cancellation of in-school classes for the remainder of the 2019-20 academic year. Therefore, there will not be a 2020 CIAC spring sports season,” the CIAC said in a statement.

Connecticut had been the last New England state to cancel spring sports.

Vermont’s Principals’ Association cancelled spring sports on April 30 while the New Hampshire Interscholastic Athletic Association pulled the plug on April 16 and the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association cancelled competition in late April. Maine cancelled spring sports on April 9 while Rhode Island made their announcement on April 24.

Connecticut still remains under a stay at home order through May 20. Lamont signed an executive order directing that face coverings or masks be worn by anyone in public wherever a six-foot distance is unavoidable. All nonessential businesses statewide remain prohibited to host in-person functions.

All social and recreational gatherings of more than five people are prohibited. This includes things such as sports, parades, concerts, festivals, live performances, and conventions. Religious, spiritual, and worship gatherings of more than 50 are prohibited through at least May 20.

According to the state Department of Health on Tuesday, there are 30,621 residents infected with the disease and there are 1,500 patients currently hospitalized with COVID-19. There have been 2,633 state residents who have died from COVID-19 related symptoms.

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 30 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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