ITHACA, N.Y. –– Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced today that school is cancelled across the state for the rest of the academic year. Following his announcement, the New York State Public High School Athletic Association has made the decision to officially cancel the remainder of their spring seasons.

“I would like to commend the work of the 11 NYSPHSAA Section Executive Directors who have worked tirelessly to benefit the students in their Sections. Many throughout our state were hopeful students would have the chance to participate in high school athletics this spring and return to some sense of normalcy,” said Dr. Robert Zayas, NYSPHSAA Executive Director. “Unfortunately, the COVID-19 crisis has taken a toll on many aspects of our lives and high school athletics is one of them. At this time, we must focus our attention on the health and safety of all New Yorkers. Please stay safe and stay positive during this difficult time.”

On Monday the NYSPHSAA announced the cancellation of the 2020 championships for spring sports.

The impacted events –– boys and girls track and field, boys tennis, softball, baseball, golf and both boys and girls lacrosse –– were set to hold state championships  between June 4 and June 13.

“Unfortunately, with the continued impact of the COVID-19 crisis, hosting the spring 2020 state championships is no longer feasible (time factor, facility and venue availability, etc.)” said Paul Harrica, NYSPHSAA president. “Canceling the remaining winter state championships in late March was challenging and the cancelation of our spring state championships today is equally disappointing.”

Dr. Robert Zayas, NYSPHSAA executive director said, “(the) decision is difficult for the membership of NYSPHSAA.  We certainly sympathize with the students, coaches and their school communities, especially the graduating seniors.”

The Ithaca City School District has not responded to request for comment about the impact on student athletes locally.

Updated: an earlier version of this story was published before Gov. Cuomo’s announcement that schools will remain closed for the rest of the academic year.

Anna Lamb

Anna Lamb is a reporter for the Ithaca Voice. Questions? Story tips? Contact her at alamb@ithacavoice.com