It was not the way the season was supposed to end. Instead of going out with a bang, the 2021 season for the Parker Broncs girls’ basketball team ended with not even a whimper: the rest of the season, including any post-season appearances, was cancelled March 3 when one of the players tested positive for the coronavirus.
Under the coronavirus protocols established by the Arizona Interscholastic Association, it was decided the team had to be quarantined and the rest of the season was cancelled.
I don’t know if it’s any consolation, but they’re not alone. They at least got to play nearly all of their season. In the fall season, many schools cancelled their athletic programs. These were mostly in the northern part of the state and in tribal areas that had been hit particularly hard by the virus.
In one case I am aware of, in 2A football, the Benson Bobcats advanced to the next round of the state playoffs because their opponent for a game, the Morenci Wildcats, had players with the coronavirus and had to forfeit the game.
You may recall the AIA wanted to cancel the entire winter sports season earlier this year. They changed their minds, but not without a lot of spirited debate among their Executive Board members.
That nasty little bug has had an effect on everything. As my friend, Randy Hartless, put it: “That’s just the world we live in right now.”
I agreed with him that we hope things don’t stay this way.
We can at least be glad this virus has a high recovery rate. The trouble is, if it makes you sick, it will make you sicker than you’ve ever been.
Actress Alyssa Milano, a vocal critic of Donald Trump when he was President, recovered from being ill with the coronavirus. She wished Trump a quick recovery when he became ill with the virus. She said being that sick was something she wouldn’t wish on anyone, even someone she despised as much as she did Trump.
So, the 2021 basketball season came to an early end for the Parker girls. It was fun while it lasted. They can be proud of themselves for playing so well with all the challenges they had this season. Many of the girls will be back for the 2021-22 season. Given how this season went, I bet they’ll be awesome.
Go Broncs! Wait ‘til next year!