Moving forward without spring sports: A message to readers and area high school seniors

Thu, 04/09/2020 - 5:45pm

The last time I sat down to pen a column piece amid the COVID-19 pandemic, I emphasized how we will get through not only the turbulent times the pandemic has brought — the record unemployment numbers, the volatile stock market, the school building closings, toilet paper shortages, and the lack of sports. 

At the time, I said: 

While it may, at this point, seem unlikely that sports will return — especially amid the postponement of the Olympics — sports will (eventually) return to the applause of everyone. 

School buildings will once again fill with students, restaurants will boom, and all will be right once again in the world — on the health and wellness front, at least. I can’t speak for the rest of our country’s dividing issues. 

In times like this, it is imperative for us to remember that we can, and we will, get through this. 

Wash your hands, cover your mouth, practice social distancing, and remember that we will get through this [...] as a nation, as a state, and as a community. 

Unfortunately, the time for sports to return to the Midcoast, or anywhere for that matter, has yet to come. The rest of that sentiment remains true. 

Though true that professional sports organizations are actively brainstorming ways to resume play as soon as possible, it is unquestionably too early for sports to return in the Midcoast, as gut-wrenching as it is to say that. 

Not only is it gut-wrenching to say that, it was only mere weeks ago, shortly after the decision to delay the start of spring sports was announced, that I sat down, relying on my past experience scheduling athletic contests, and devised a blueprint for the spring sports season to resume and maintain nearly a typical slate of contests. 

The decision, no matter how correct, is, of course, a devastating blow to the senior student-athletes, who unlike their collegiate senior counterparts will not receive an extra season in 2021. 

These unusual times will forever have a lasting impact on us all, athletic personnel or not. It is imperative for us to keep moving forward and keeping perspective of what truly matters most to each of us. 

As any coach will tell you, sports does for a player than teaching them the ins and outs of the game. Sports builds character. Sports teaches one how to overcome adversity. Sports provides camaraderie. Seniors, I implore you to take these lessons, and many others your coaches have bestowed on you, as you progress in life, whether that be into collegiate athletics, adult league athletics, or other non-athletic endeavors. 

To our area senior athletes, we at the Penobscot Bay Pilot wish you nothing but the best as you move forward in your lives. 

To the seniors poised to play collegiate athletics, whenever that may be, we wish you much success in your future seasons, and we look forward to adding you to our ongoing series where we catch up with the area’s alumni who have moved on to collegiate athletics. 

To the seniors opting not to play collegiate athletics, we wish you much success in your next endeavors — be it higher education, apprenticeships, or embarking on a career — and we hope to be able to chronicle important parts of your life on our website. 

While there is little any of us, at this point, can promise, our sports department can promise one thing: our website’s sports section will not remain stale in the weeks ahead. We look forward to telling sports stories in the weeks, and months, ahead. 

While we have some sports stories in the works, and others on a massive to-do list following countless hours of brainstorming sessions, we are very much open to hearing from the sports community on great stories to be told, and encourage you to write us via email: sports@penbaypilot.com


Reach George Harvey, Sports Director, and the sports department at: sports@penbaypilot.com