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Prep spring sports suspension extended

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MONTANA – The Montana High School Association executive board held a conference call last week to discuss the options for the spring activities during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

The MHSA executive board followed Governor Steve Bullock’s lead. The governor extended the state’s stay-at-home directive to April 24, although that date could also be extended. With the directive in mind, MHSA voted to extend the statewide suspension of the high school softball, golf, tennis and track and field seasons to coincide with the governor’s date. The suspension extends to all practices, contests, meets and festivals.

“We take seriously the directives from the governor, State Health Department and Centers for Disease Control for the safety of our students and for their communities,” MHSA Executive Director Mark Beckman wrote in an email to schools. “Their safety is our top priority during these challenging times.”

According to Beckman, “Resumption of spring activities will depend on our student’s ability to return to in-person instruction by May 4. If in-person instruction doesn’t resume by that time, spring activities will be canceled.”  

If spring activities are resumed, the practice requirement for softball, tennis and track and field programs will be required, which is to conduct five practices before games or meets. The postseason formats would be adjusted by the MHSA with executive board approval.

The MHSA April executive board meeting scheduled for April 20-21 has been postponed until May 18-19, depending on directives from the governor, State Health Department and CDC.

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