COVID-19 threatens athletes

COVID-19 shutdowns have affected the NBA, NCAA championships, college institutions and now the MSU athletic department. A statement was sent out from The Lone Star Conference suspending regular-season competition until March 30.

”Based on the latest developments and the continued spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19), the Lone Star Conference today announced the suspension of regular-season competition for teams in all sports until March 30,” LSC said.

The suspension has affected the men and women’s tennis conference opener against Dallas Baptist University. The women’s team was planning on starting its fight for the conference title after placing second in the tournament in 2019 and holding first place from 2017-2018. Marketing senior and All-American Ashley Ramirez won’t be able to have another chance at accomplishing her goal this year and describes this situation as a bad dream.

“Personally, I don’t think that it has really sunk in yet. This whole situation seems like a bad dream that I’ll wake up from any moment. There were so many things that we wanted to accomplish this year and many of us won’t have another chance since we’re graduating,” Ramirez said.

Due to the shutdown, the Mustangs will miss eight matches and five of those are conference matches. Global studies senior Lea Cizeron still can’t believe that she will not be able to compete for a national championship but looks at this as a lesson to enjoy every moment.

”For me, I don’t believe it yet — it’s so unbelievable. But it’s a good lesson for everyone to enjoy moments every second that they can, [and to] enjoy what they love doing because nothing is granted and everything is temporary. No national championship is the hardest to believe for me,” Cizeron said.

Men’s tennis is in the same bind, as they will not be able to battle for another conference title after placing second in 2019 and winning the title in 2018. Five out of eight games are conference matches that Angel Palacios, business management senior, will not be able to compete in.

“I don’t think it’s fair because everyone has worked so hard through the years, especially seniors, and for it to end this way is truly upsetting, but hopefully the NCAA can give an extra year of eligibility,” Palacios said.

The suspension seriously affects the softball team as they will miss 12 games. Lauren Lindgren (No. 6), outfielder and special education senior, is heartbroken over the suspension and hopes that herself and the other seniors will get another chance to be on the field.

“It’s something we as a team could have never imagined happening. We work for five months in the offseason all day, everyday preparing for this. So having it taken away from us is nothing we could have ever prepared for. It’s obviously heartbreaking but we just have to keep working at practice throughout the break and hope that we seniors get the chance to take the field one more time in April,” Lindgren said.

The women’s track team was in the middle of a transition from indoor to outdoor and will miss its season opener, Wes Kittley Invitational, for the outdoor season. Head Coach Koby Styles wishes for different solutions but still has a positive outlook on the upcoming season.

“I wish it would have gone for more of suspension or holding pattern for a couple of weeks until we got more information, and see where this virus is heading. The Lone Star Conference is withholding events until March 3o. If that’s the case and they say that we are good to go, then there are still four track meets scheduled until the LSC championships. We will make the best of it and get out there and whoop some tail. We are still going to train as if we were still in season,” Styles said.

The cycling team will not miss any races as they are training for the South Central Collegiate Cycling Conference Championship scheduled for April 4-5. Director of Cycling Charlie Zamastil will prioritize the safety of his team, but continue to train and keep its eyes on the championships.

”Preparations for nationals continue unabated. Our A riders will still train with toward winning the collegiate road national championships whether they take place as scheduled or at a later date. We will, of course, prioritize the safety of all involved, but we’ve been advised continuing to train as we do poses no additional risk to us or the public,” Zamastil said.

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