COVID-19 Delays High-Risk High School Sports, Cancels Winter State Championships


ROCHESTER, NY (WXXI) – High School sports are facing more delays and cancellations due to the increase in COVID-19 around New York state.

The so-called high-risk sports, like basketball, hockey, wrestling and lacrosse, had already been delayed until January 4. Now, the New York State Public High School Athletic Association says that those sports will be delayed until state authorization is granted.

And the association has canceled all 2021 winter state championships.

Fritz Kilian is director of Health, P.E. and Athletics in the Fairport Central School District. Obviously, he’s disappointed, and he knows the student-athletes will be as well, but he says you can’t ignore the rising COVID numbers and this is the prudent thing to do.

“I just say to myself, we’re not canceled, and hopefully we will get to a place where the numbers go down and we can find a way to offer these opportunities for our student athletes and community.”

Kilian is hopeful that Governor Andrew Cuomo might take another look at sports like volleyball and lacrosse, which are no longer considered high risk by the NCAA.   And he also said he understands why the state championships were canceled.

“You think of people traveling, you think of them going into restaurants, you think of them in hotel rooms, that made sense. I think to me, I think the biggest emotion that I felt was reading that the high risk sports are suspended, put on pause indefinitely until we get more guidance from our state leaders,” Kilian said.