Phoenix Union is canceling HS winter sports and plans to play in the spring

PHOENIX – The Phoenix Union High School District announced on Friday that its winter sports season, which was postponed as a precaution during the COVID-19 pandemic, had been canceled.

With basketball, soccer, and wrestling seasons wiped out, the district plans to enter the Arizona Interscholastic Association’s spring sports competition starting next month.

“Although still at an uncertain level, the spread of COVID-19 in our zip codes continues to decline,” the district said in a letter to athletes and parents. “We therefore remain confident that we can start sports conditioning for spring sports in March according to the AIA calendar.”

After the AIA postponed the entire winter season and then voted to cancel, the state governing body for university sports reversed course last month and gave the go-ahead for the competition.

But Phoenix Union decided not to participate, citing a surge in coronavirus spread that has since subsided. The district said Friday it was now too late for its basketball, soccer and wrestling teams to join the AIA schedule.

“We have reached a point in our postponement where it is no longer possible to complete the required number of exercises (14) to host winter competitions before the spring sports season starts on March 1st,” the letter said.

However, district officials are considering spring leagues for winter sports.

“We hope to be able to start basketball, soccer, and maybe even wrestling competitions from April,” said Superintendent Dr. Chad
Gestson said in a press release.

Additionally, Phoenix Union plans to hold scouting combines so its athletes can perform in front of college recruits.

Phoenix Union is one of the most cautious districts in Arizona when it comes to dealing with COVID-19 and has not yet opened its classrooms for classes this school year. March 15th is scheduled to return to personal learning.

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