Seasons are not quite over for all Fairbanks North Star Borough student athletes after the Alaska School Activities Association announced the cancellation of all remaining 2020 fall championships this week.
The announcement was made in a statement posted to the association’s website on Tuesday and comes as a result of rising COVID-19 case counts in Anchorage and other parts of the state along with concerns over the impact of travel into and out of the state during the holiday season.
During their Tuesday meeting, the ASAA Board of Directors passed two motions making schedule changes related to COVID-19 concerns.
The first was a motion to cancel all state championship events scheduled prior to January 1 while allowing regions to host regional championships within specified time frames. The second motion postpones all state activities not already in progress until a revised schedule can be made.
State football playoffs are cancelled but schools can continue to play games within their region. Division 2 and 3 teams can play until Oct. 24, and division 1 teams can play until Oct. 30.
Flag football, gymnastics, swim and dive, volleyball, rifle and bowling can continue to play within their region until Nov. 21. E-sports, rifle and drama, debate and forensics can compete in virtual formats outside of their regions until Nov. 21.
All other ASAA sanctioned activities have been postponed until after the new year. A Calendar Revision Committee will present recommendations to the ASAA Board of Directors at a Nov. 9 board meeting.
Within the Fairbanks North Star Borough, district teams will continue to compete in volleyball, rifle and swimming regional competitions. Assistant Superintendent Luke Meinert wrote in an email that division 1 volleyball regional will be in Lathrop on Nov. 13 and 14. and division 2 volleyball regional will be in Valdez from Nov. 5-7.
Meinert wrote that rifle and swimming competition dates and locations are being determined. “Practices for district teams that are currently participating will continue throughout the remainder of their seasons,” Meinert added.
The statement on Tuesday said that the board’s decision was made in consultation with the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services and the Anchorage Health Department.
ASAA Executive Director Billy Strickland said the decision on Tuesday was based on what the board heard from state and local health officials. “What they informed us of is current case counts increasing a lot with the potential to continue to do so,” Strickland said. “That was what led us to think that hosting a statewide event would potentially be problematic.”
Contact staff writer Sam Ferrara at 459-7575. Follow him on Twitter: @FDNMoutdoors.