Low- and moderate-risk sports are expected to begin as scheduled on Nov. 30, NYSPHSAA executive director Robert Zayas announced on Monday Nov. 9.
Low- and moderate-risk moderate winter sports include bowling, indoor track and field, skiing and swimming and diving.
Earlier in the day state budget director Robert Mujica, speaking on behalf of Gov. Andrew Cuomo said the state was “not inclined” to allow winter sports, sending a wave of confusion through the state.
The confusion sent Zayas to consult with state officials for clarification.
While the NYSPHSAA has established Nov. 30 as the start date for winter sports, the high-risk winter sports, which include locally basketball, wrestling and competitive cheerleading, are awaiting approval.
“The high risk start date continues to be examined and will be revised if needed, but is contingent upon authorization from state officials,” Zayas said.
The last area interscholastic sports that took place were during the New York State Public High School Athletic Association boys’ and girls’ basketball regionals. Both the Newburgh Free Academy and Marlboro boys and Marlboro girls played and lost in regional contests, played in empty gymnasiums.
The tournaments didn’t move forward as the remainder of the tournament contests were canceled, and spring tryouts were stopped. By early May, spring sports were canceled altogether.
Newburgh Free Academy pitcher and catcher Jack Clifford said the spring cancellation, was hard on the seniors because they lost their final season, but also the juniors who were looking to get recruited to play in college as they were off the field at a time when scouts usually come around.
Then with spring canceled, eyes were turned toward the fall, originally scheduled to begin preseason on Aug. 24, but was postponed until Sept. 21. While Cuomo allowed all sports except football, volleyball, and competitive cheerleading to go forward, Section 9 postponed fall sports to March. There are no fall state championships.
New York State Interscholastic Athletic Association Executive Director Robert Zayas said in September that winter and spring state championships are still scheduled. The spring season has been postponed until April 19.