OFSAA winter sports cancelled
The COVID-19 pandemic has claimed the Ontario Federation of School Athletic Associations winter sports season.
“After a meeting of our Return to Sports Working Group in recent days, OFSAA’s Executive Council determined that the current reopening regulations within the province have not progressed to the point where our winter championships and festivals can take place,” read a statement from OFSAA president Nick Rowe. “We are disheartened to announce that the following OFSAA events are cancelled in 2021: snowboarding, alpine skiing, nordic skiing, curling, girls volleyball; boys basketball; hockey, swimming and wrestling.”
The news, while disappointing, was certainly expected. Ontario University Athletics and the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association had canceled their winter sports season in mid-October.
“It’s tough to get things going with all the health protocols that have to be met and obviously the rising numbers as well,” said Rina Rode, the sports co-ordinator for the Niagara Region High School Athletic Association.
The provincial high school sporting association says it will continue to monitor the feasibility of OFSAA spring events which include badminton, baseball, track and field, soccer, rugby, tennis and field lacrosse.
“We will see what happens as things play out with hopefully a vaccine on the horizon,” Rode said.
She agrees that high school is not the same without extracurriculars.
“It’s not just sports,” she said. “It’s music, drama, clubs and ski trips. It must be tough for all the kids.”
Niagara Catholic Athletic Association sports convenor Chris McLean could not be reached for comment.
The OFSAA Return to Sports Working Group is made up of school administrators, teachers, a director of education, a public health official and OFSAA staff.