RI Interscholastic League cancels 2020 spring sports

PROVIDENCE, R.I (WLNE) – The Rhode Island Interscholastic League (RIIL) announced that the spring sports season is canceled on Friday.

This is in accordance with the announcement on Thursday made by Governor Raimondo, that students will continue distance learning for the remainder of the academic year.

“In our original statement, we said that we would hold a spring season if we returned to school”, said Principals’ Committee on Athletics Chairman, and Cranston High School East principal, Sean Kelly.

“Throughout this process, we followed the guidelines set forth by Governor Gina Raimondo, the Rhode Island Department of Health, The Rhode Island Department of Education, and our Superintendents. We are going to continue to do so. We are a school-based athletic program; therefore, if we do not return to school, we cannot return to sports”, said Kelly.

Kelly noted how devastating this news is to graduating seniors who were looking forward to their final high school athletics season.

RIIL Executive Director, Thomas Mezzanotte addressed how unprecedented the current circumstances are.

“While we have all established protocols and emergency action plans for many types of situations, we simply have no playbook to follow this unique global health crisis. Just as we made every effort to complete the winter tournament season, we remained hopeful that at least some form of a spring sports season would be possible and spent the past several weeks exploring many scenarios in the event that it could be saved. We had the best of intentions but unfortunately, we’re at the mercy of this deadly virus. We are dealing with a catastrophic situation, and the only way we can respond is in a way that supports the health and safety of our student-athletes and everyone involved”, said Mezzanotte.

“I commend the PCOA for the hard work, expertise, and attention that they have paid to these important issues,” Mezzanotte said. “These are not issues that we deal with every day.

Mezzanotte also thanks the students athletes for the positive contributions they made to their respective teams and for showing great resilience.

The RIIL will continue to rely on the governor and the department of health, and urge students to observe socials distancing guidlines.

©WLNE-TV/ABC6 2020

Categories: Coronavirus, News, Regional News, Rhode Island