Springfield Public Schools held a series of Senior Nights for district athletes as a way to honor them in a year when many of them lost their seasons due to COVID-19.
“Our 2020 seniors lost out on so many high school milestones this past spring, we didn’t want missing their Senior Night to be one of them,” Josh Scott, SPS athletic director, said in a statement.
Scott worked with assistant athletic director Marty Marsh and the SPS athletic department to create five districtwide competitions for spring sports: soccer, baseball, tennis, track, and golf.
The newly graduated seniors would play one game against other recent graduates.
“Our season got interrupted very abruptly, and we weren’t ever able to play a full game as a team,” Hillcrest High School head soccer coach Roy Hardy said in a statement. “So this match brought some closure to their soccer career. We were able to honor them, and it meant a lot to our athletes and their parents.”
Central High School celebrated their new field by hosting a baseball game for all five high schools.
AD Scott said it was important to celebrate the way athletics help students learn life skills far beyond the field or court.
“Sports are an opportunity for our students to improve teamwork, communication, conflict resolution and belonging to something larger than themselves,” Scott said. “Study after study identifies traits learned through athletics and activities positively correlate to adults ability to adapt and deal with adversity — things we all need right now.”