WIAA creates fourth sports season
Last updated 7/28/2020 at 11:15am
RENTON -- The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association announced Tuesday night that several traditional fall sports will now be played in early spring in light of the continuing increased spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.
The move announced by the WIAA Executive Board essentially creates four sanctioned sports seasons by moving moderate and high-risk team sports from fall to spring. Those sports are football, girls soccer, 1B/2B boys soccer and volleyball -- which will form WIAA Season 3.
In a July 21 news release, the WIAA said Season 1 this fall will consist of cross country and slowpitch softball as well as alternative seasons for golf and tennis. Practice begins Sept. 7, with the season to run Sept. 7 -- Nov. 8.
Season 2 will be traditional winter sports, expected to begin late December, early January and run through March 7. Season 3 will kickoff March 8 and run through May 2, with Season 4 -- traditional spring sports along with Dance/Drill -- beginning April 26 and running through June 27. Each season will get one week of pre-season practice, with the exception of football in Season 3 which will get two weeks.
The WIAA will assess each county's progression through the reopening phases laid out by Gov. Jay Inslee's "Safe Start" plan and create benchmarks at its July 28 meeting to be met in order for Season 1 to take place. If the benchmarks are not met, the executive board will move the remainder of Season 1 fall sports to Season 3.
All of the dates and changes are tentative, pending a final decision by the board.
"Since March, the philosophy of our Association has been to allow students every chance to participate," WIAA Executive Director Mick Hoffman said in the news release announcing the changes. "We've asked our Executive Board and planning committees to be as creative as possible in allowing for those opportunities."