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Catholic schools officially cancel remainder of spring sports season

St. Anthony's players rush their goalie after defeating

St. Anthony's players rush their goalie after defeating Chaminade, 14-13, in the CHSAA boys lacrosse final on Wednesday, May 15, 2019, at St. Anthony's High School. Credit: Joseph D. Sullivan

The Nassau-Suffolk Catholic High School Athletic Association has canceled the remainder of the spring sports season. The announcement came after Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo said that all schools statewide will be closed for the remainder of the school year.

“We had a meeting with our Athletic Directors Council, which includes all nine of our members, late Friday afternoon and voted to cancel the spring sports season,” said Ralph Dalton, the boys president of the NSCHSAA. “It was a unanimous vote.”

Dalton said the league is following the governor's lead.

The boys program has six sports: baseball, track, lacrosse, volleyball, golf and tennis. The girls program has five sports: badminton, softball, lacrosse, track and golf.

The NSCHSAA also was scheduled to hold its first state baseball championship at MCU Park, home of the Brooklyn Cyclones, in Coney Island this June. The coordinators representing all the Catholic schools in the four dioceses — Buffalo, Rockville Centre, Brooklyn-Queens and New York City — had approved a plan to hold a statewide tournament for the first time in history.

“We were very excited to have our first state baseball tournament in place,” Dalton said. “It was something that we were very proud to have formed over the last few years.

“We were all hoping for a different outcome and our hearts certainly go out to all of our athletes, especially the seniors. This is an especially difficult time for everyone as we live in such challenging times.”

The St. Anthony’s boys lacrosse team was to play a schedule loaded with top teams across the country.

“It was a challenging schedule against some great programs,” said Joe Minucci, the director of athletics at St. Anthony’s. “They were scheduled to play eight of our state opponents and travel to six different states. Our team had the number-one recruit in the country in Brennan O’Neill and he was surrounded by a bunch of talent. It was going to be a very special year. It’s awful what’s happened to our senior class and very tough on the younger players who lose the year in the recruiting process.”     

Dalton said there has been no talk of the fall season, but he expects the council to address the fall at the next meeting.

“We wish all of our seniors nothing but the best moving forward, and we pray that everyone stays safe and healthy,” he said. “We all want this to be back to normal as soon as possible.”

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