Hornet coaches discuss state of spring sports

Mar 26, 2020 by

Published March 26, 2020

By STEPHEN MARTELLUCCI

NORTH READING — Due to the COVID-19 crisis, Massachusetts high school sports have been put on hold. The date for the first spring practices was originally scheduled for March 16.

The MIAA (Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association), who canceled the championship games in hockey and basketball on March 14 and 15, initially pushed the start date of the spring season to March 30. They later moved the start date back to April 27.

The plan, if they do start on April 27, is to play a shortened season with the playoffs ending by June 20. If they get the season started later, the plan would be to have a regular season without a playoff.

Second-year North Reading High girls’ lacrosse coach Matt Costello met with his team at the beginning of March before everything changed.

“The top priority now is the social distancing,” said Costello, about his message to his squad during this period. “If they want to go online to follow a fitness resource they can but I cannot coach them what to do. If we do return, we will treat it like our original start date.”

Costello said he would still like to see the team play a season even if it is after the MIAA mandated start date to have a playoff.

“We would be grateful even to get to play a few games,” he said.

Paul Greene is the assistant coach for the NRHS varsity softball team helping his daughter Michelle who is the head coach.

“She met with the team back in February,” said Greene.

Greene hopes the players will work out on their own during the downtime, running, doing pushups and even playing catch at a distance. He realizes that hitting will have to be put on the backburner.

“I feel bad for the seniors,” said Greene, who has been with the team for six years. “I look forward to getting back with them and the other players.”

Like Costello, Greene also would like to see the team have a season even if the playoffs are scrapped.

“That is okay with me,” said Greene, about just playing the 10 to 12 game regular season without a tournament.

All the coaches and players can do at this point is play the waiting game and see what the MIAA decides in the upcoming weeks.

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