No state champions will be crowned this spring for Florida high school sports thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Florida High School Athletic Association, which oversees high school athletics, announced the cancellation of all FHSAA-affiliated spring sports April 20, two days after Gov. Ron DeSantis decided schools will continue distance learning for the remainder of the 2019-20 academic year.
“…it is with heavy hearts that the FHSAA has decided to cancel all FHSAA affiliated events, inclusive of the state series and all championship events, for spring sports. The safety of our student-athletes, coaches, officials, and fans is our top priority. With the evolving threat of the CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19), we must ensure that we do not contribute to the spread of this illness. We are deeply saddened for our student-athletes who have seen their seasons and/or high school careers end so abruptly. Our Association knows the impact and role high school athletics play in the lives of so many and will continue to work towards the betterment of high school sports. We know this is a trying time, but the health and safety of all is of utmost importance to this Association,” the FHSAA stated in a press release.
The FHSAA also announced that it will not grant additional eligibility to the student-athletes impacted by the abrupt end of their seasons. The announcement means Okeechobee High School seniors, including the Tribe’s Jacee Jumper (softball), Ozzy Osceola (baseball) and Kaleb Thomas (baseball), have played their final games for the Brahmans. The softball and baseball teams were less than halfway through their regular seasons when play was halted in March.
Read the FHSAA press release here.