The NHIAA canceling all Spring sports


Rory Klauber

At the beginning of freshman year of high school, Delaney Weimer ‘21 decided to take her tennis game to the next level by practicing and playing for the HB Tennis team. Over the two years she has been on the team, she has worked her way to the top and now is a co-captain playing number one singles and number one doubles partners with other co-captain, Lia Eisenberg. “We are all very disappointed about our season being canceled. That being said, the health and well-being of our community is much more important, and I understand why the NHIAA made this difficult decision. We are all keeping our heads and trying to stay positive during these trying times, and I know that everyone is looking forward to the next season already!” said Weimer.

Rory Klauber, Staff Writer

After just the Fall and Winter seasons, the 2019-2020 school year for Hollis-Brookline athletics has been one to remember in and of itself. “This has been a tremendous year for HBHS Athletics: the Football Championship, the Golf team [was] runner-up, the Ice Hockey [made it to the] quarter-finals, the Boys and Girls Basketball team [both made it to the] quarter-finals, the Bowling team [was] first in the regular season, the Girls Soccer team [made it to the] semi-finals, and the Boys Soccer team [made it to the] quarter-finals,” said 18-year HB Athletics Director Rhon Rupp.

Looking to continue the hot streak, HB athletes were training, working out, and preparing harder than ever for the promising spring season to come. 

Then on April 16, the state of New Hampshire and Governor Chris Sununu issued all schools and sporting events to close down until the Coronavirus is under control. The news of the NHIAA canceling all Spring sports came around, and it hit Hollis-Brookline High School especially hard. “I feel many of our spring teams would have been in the hunt for State Championships,” said Rupp.

The Coronavirus or COVID-19 has taken the world on a rollercoaster since it was first detected in Wuhan, China late in 2019. Currently, over 3 million people in the world have reported the virus and the U.S. state of New Hampshire is hovering around 2,000 known cases. These high numbers led to the ultimate decision by the state of New Hampshire to cancel the NHIAA spring season. 

Last year, the HB Baseball team was on the verge of winning the State Championship and it came down to one pitch that turned the tide in the game. The entire team felt devastated the way the season wrapped up last season, so they all put in more hours of practice in preparation for this season. “Hungry for this year is an understatement. We were ready to dominate the league this year. We had everything, and it would have been hard to beat us. Especially after coming so close the year prior, we couldn’t wait for the 2020 season to finally leave our mark (and a banner) on the league and the school’s history,” said one of HB’s Senior pitchers, Camden Guay. 

We had put in the work, we had taken the swings, and we were ready to show NH high school ball what HB was all about. We could not wait for what would have undoubtedly been one of the best seasons of our lives,” said Guay.

The HB Boys Volleyball team made a playoffs run last year and came up just short of the title. This season, they were going to be out for blood and the title of State Champions. “ I genuinely believe we had a very good shot at winning the championship this year if we were to have a season. The competition would have been tough, but we have a very solid starting group as well as a great bench with lots of energy and talent,” said senior-captain Connor Russell. 

“In Layman’s terms, this whole thing just sucks. This was supposed to be a time where seniors could commit to a college, relax a little, and enjoy the last couple of months of time with our friends before going off to live the rest of our lives. Some people might never see the towns of Hollis or Brookline ever again, so this was kind of a time for the ‘Final Goodbye’ and I hate to see it cut short like this,” said Russell.

HB’s Spring Track team was another team set up to go the distance and claim the State Championship this season. After the second-place finish in division II last year, the Track team was ready to make up the seven points that kept them away from the title last season and set some new high school records. “This coming season, we were looking to improve and do better than we did last year. With the loss of last year’s seniors but the addition of some other students and freshmen, we had high hopes of potentially winning the division II title,” said senior-captain Aidan Maguire. 

“It’s sad to see the season go, especially since it’s my senior year season. I was looking to break a school record but since the season is canceled the record will stand,” said Maguire.

For the Girls Tennis team, this Spring season outlook was bright. After just winning three matches all last season, the team was given a wake-up call and they started preparing for this Spring season. “We have all gotten to know each other very well over the past few years, and it is so sad to think that we aren’t able to play this year. Many of us have been putting in a lot of off-season work and were all really looking forward to spending another year on the courts together and hopefully winning some more matches,” said captain Delaney Weimer ‘21. 

“I can speak for the entire team that we feel horrible for the Boys Tennis team, which is mostly made up of seniors. For the past two years, the boys’ team made it to the championships, and they have come so close to being the state champions. I know they were all hoping to finally bring home the win this season, and I feel awful that those seniors won’t have another opportunity at the state championships,” said Weimer.

Last Spring season, the HB Crew team saw many seniors graduate, leaving the team in the hands of the strong and hard-working underclassmen. The underclassmen along with a couple of dedicated seniors were forecasted to do very well this season even with the absence of one of HB’s best rowers. “I’m unbelievably disappointed in the cancellation of this spring season (and from what it looks like this summer rowing season as well),” said senior rower Isaac Connelly. 

“It was agreed that it would be best if I continued into this spring season as an unaffiliated rower. I plan on continuing to row on any body of water that I can find during the quarantine, and I’ve been training every day,” said Connelly.

During this time of self-quarantining, HB’s athletic staff composed of Rupp, Athletic Director Brian Bumpus, and Athletic Trainer Mike Thompson have been in constant contact with the state, the NHIAA, and other Athletic directors to see if there is any possibility of a brief spring season for athletes. “We were all hoping that we might be able to get some sort of spring season in, even if a short one, so we were busy working on possible schedules as well as the usual stuff of making sure we could get officials, buses, etc.,” said Rupp. 

Nothing related to athletics has been decided upon and is still up in the air, but sporting events are not looking promising for this school year. 

On April 29, the SAU41 district had a meeting to discuss the remainder of the school year and they determined it would be best to allow seniors to get out on May 22. This decision limits the time frame the season would need to fall between and each school district has their own plan for the conclusion of the school year. For now, it is safe to say that spring sports will be on the back burner and might even be absorbed completely by the Coronavirus. 

“At this point, we are hoping that everyone stays safe and looking forward to the day when we can get back on the fields and the courts and hear the ump/referee say play ball!” said Rupp.