Where have all the athletes gone?

Historic year of sports cut short by COVID-19


Brooke Barkley

As I stare out onto an empty Panther Stadium, I can’t help but wonder when and if spring sports will return this season. My heart goes out to all of the seniors whose last high school season has been taken from them.

Sports. One of the best parts about high school. Covering sports for the last three years at The Prowler has been one of the greatest moments of my young life. 

I have had the privilege of witnessing some of the school’s most historic moments from the sidelines.”

— Sports Editor Ben Barkley

I have had the privilege of witnessing some of the school’s most historic moments from the sidelines. It has been my job to bring those stories to my fellow peers and the local community.

With the school shutting down due to COVID-19, sports have been postponed until further notice. This has left the school a deserted wasteland, with no student activity going on inside or out. 

All the fields and practice fields are abandoned. Many athletes are left with nothing to do. While this has affected all student athletes, the seniors have been hit the hardest. 

A fear of possibly their last season being taken away from them has set in, and these fears are reasonable, mainly due to the NCAA canceling all spring sports for the rest of the semester.

For me, I’ve been desperately missing the spring sports season, and I feel I’ve been robbed myself — robbed of my last chance to cover the amazing sports at Starr’s Mill as Sports Editor. 

It has been one historic year for sports at Starr’s Mill, from a last second field goal to beat Griffin and football going on to win its fourth straight region championship to junior wrestler Ethan Kasler placing second at state. Swimming won its 20th straight county championship, and girls’ basketball won the region for the first time ever. 

Many spring sports teams were already putting themselves in position to make even more history for the Mill’s athletics until it all came to an abrupt halt.

Spring sports is one of my favorite times in the sports season. While it is the busiest season for us to cover at The Prowler, it is also the most action-packed. Even though lacrosse and soccer don’t fill up Panther Stadium like football does, it doesn’t mean that they do not want a piece of school history.

The teams were looking at bright futures this season. Girls’ lacrosse came into the season looking to repeat as state champions. Boys’ lacrosse started the season a perfect 10-0, and MaxPreps currently has them ranked number one in the state. Both soccer teams started the season strong with an undefeated region record in hopes of returning to the state championship.

Girls’ golf was trying to go for a fourth straight state championship, baseball was set to take on McIntosh for control of the region, track was seemingly already guaranteeing a strong showing at state, and girls’ tennis was undefeated.  

Hopefully, this will all pass and sports will be back in April for the teams to continue their respective quests and secure another Director’s Cup. The athletes want it, the fans want it, and the Sports Department at The Prowler wants it.

Panther Nation, please stay safe out there. Take the proper precautions to avoid exposure to COVID-19. Reach out to a class of 2020 athlete who is feeling down about the season possibly being over before it really even began.