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PIAA further delays start of spring sports, puts winter championships on 'hold'

STAFF AND WIRE REPORT
(Easton) Express-Times (TNS)
Susquehannock swimmer Logan McFadden

The PIAA moved in unison with Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on Monday afternoon.

The state’s governing body of scholastic sports delayed the start of the spring season another two weeks, matching the governor’s decision regarding school closures, according to a news release.

The PIAA issued a statement that read: "The start of spring sports is postponed another two weeks and the possible re-start of the winter championships will continue to hold. No date has been determined to re-start of any sports activities at this time."

Wolf also issued a "stay at home" directive on Monday to seven counties for the next two weeks. Those counties have been hit hardest by the conronavirus outbreak.

The PIAA initially suspended the winter championships for at least two weeks on March 12. The scholastic spring sports season and the conclusion of the winter championships now cannot begin any earlier than Monday, April 6.

“As we navigate through this difficult time we need to remember the lessons that interscholastic athletics has taught us: cooperation, patience, sacrifice, responsibility, respect and perseverance,” the PIAA statement said.

The extension continues to shrink the window the PIAA will have to fit in the winter championships and spring sports before the academic year is scheduled to end. The closure of recreation centers and swimming pools have made it hard to train and stay in shape for athletes scheduled to compete in the winter championships and spring sports.

An earlier release from the PIAA also prohibited athletes from organizing practices among themselves, which has made even informal team practices for spring sports impossible.

There were four York-Adams League teams still alive in the PIAA basketball quarterfinals when the tournament action was suspended: New Oxford (5-A boys), Central York (6-A girls), Gettysburg (5-A girls) and Delone Catholic (3-A girls).

In the 2-A swimming event, Susquehannock's Logan McFadden was considered a major gold-medal threat in several events.