The Minnesota State High School league announced Thursday, April 23, that all spring sports and fine arts activities would be canceled for the 2019-2020 season.
For Jacob Zacharias and other area athletes, the news was devastating.
“I was bummed when I found out, but I saw it coming,” said Zacharias, a senior on the Cambridge-Isanti boys tennis team. “We were pretty sure the season was going to be canceled, but when it happened officially it was still a big bummer.”
The statement from the MSHSL came just hours after Gov. Tim Walz ordered Minnesota school to remain closed for the rest of the academic year.
“In response to Executive Order 20-41 issued today by Minnesota Governor Tim Walz, the Minnesota State High School League, under direction of the League’s Board of Directors, has declared, effective immediately, all activities and athletics that occur during the spring season have been canceled for the 2019-2020 school year,” the MSHSL said in an official statement. “The decision of the League is aligned with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Minnesota Department of Health and is in support of practices that focus on community health and safety.”
The cancellation will impact the sports of adapted bowling, adapted softball, badminton, baseball, clay target, golf, lacrosse, softball, synchronized swimming, tennis and track and field. Also affected are music, robotics, speech and visual arts. Section and state tournaments are canceled as well.
While Zacharias still has a college career ahead after signing to play at University of Wisconsin-Superior, losing his senior year meant he lost the opportunity to earn a berth in the state tournament.
“This was the first year I was healthy during the off-season, so I had some lofty goals,” he said. “But the three years I had to play tennis at Cambridge-Isanti were an amazing time.”
Activities and spring athletics have been suspended since March 15.