NCAA championships canceled; MIAA suspends play

BY FHSU SPORTS INFORMATION

INDIANAPOLIS / KANSAS CITY – On Thursday (March 12, 2020), NCAA President Mark Emmert and the Board of Governors canceled all NCAA Winter and Spring Championships. This decision is based on the evolving COVID-19 public health threat, our ability to ensure the events do not contribute to spread of the pandemic, and the impracticality of hosting such events at any time during this academic year given ongoing decisions by other entities.

Along with the cancellation of NCAA Winter and Spring Championships, the MIAA and its member institutions announced the suspension of all MIAA intercollegiate sports activities (practice and competition) effective at 11 pm, March 12, 2020. The Association’s decision is the result of ongoing consultation with campus leaders, and follows the decision today by the NCAA to cancel all winter and spring championships for all three NCAA divisions. The indefinite suspension applies to all institutional practices and competitions in any MIAA sport, regardless of season, until further notice. All spring sports are suspended indefinitely at this time.

Unfortunately, this marks the end of another great season for FHSU Women’s Basketball, along with the great individual efforts made by athletes from FHSU Wrestling and FHSU Track and Field. The NCAA Division II Women’s Basketball Regional Championship in Warrensburg, Mo., NCAA Division II Wrestling Championships in Sioux Falls, S.D., and NCAA Division II Indoor Track and Field Championships in Birmingham, Ala.

The FHSU Women’s Basketball team was selected to compete in its third straight NCAA Tournament and fifth in the last six years, but finishes the year at 23-7 overall. It was the ninth-straight 20-plus win season for the Tigers under head coach Tony Hobson. The Tiger senior class included Kacey Kennett, Belle Barbieri, Taylor Rolfs, Kyleigh Kasper, and Lanie Page.

Seniors Brandon Ball and Jordan Davis, junior Marty Verhaeghe, sophomore Aryus Jones, and redshirt-freshman Mason Turner all reached the NCAA Championship in Sioux Falls, S.D. The four individuals outside of Ball were making their first appearance at the championships, while Ball was set to make his fourth appearance in the championships.

Tiger track and field athletes Ryan Stanley (sophomore pole vaulter) and Summer Kragel (junior high jumper) were set to compete at the NCAA Championships in Birmingham, Ala.

Further updates will be provided as more information becomes available in the days ahead.

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