The coronavirus's impact on America and American students cannot be overstated. On top of being surrounded by news of sickness and isolation, students have been removed from schools and have been forced to learn from home and isolate from their friends and classmates, with the question “When will this end” circulating through their brains with no clear answer. Many seniors have also been wondering what will happen to their spring sports, and if they will be forced to be sidelined in their homes and miss their entire seasons.
However, Sean Wodell, a senior baseball player at Freehold Borough High School in New Jersey, seems to have come up with a possible solution for this problem.
Sean had the idea for this petition a little over a week ago, and chose to put the petition on change.org, with an almost four paragraph description attached to it. The description is essentially calling to the NJSIAA, the governing body of all NJ high school sports, to allow spring athletes, if the spring season is cancelled, to participate in sports during the summer. Sean says in his description, “This is the last year of baseball that most Seniors will be able to play, and for all the last year they will represent their town, their school and to be able to play with the teammates they’ve grown up with”.
While this idea may seem far-fetched, Sean explains that it is really not out of the realm of things that normally occur in high school sports. He says “Football programs are able to practice in the summer months, weeks before anyone begins to even think about school, so why shouldn’t baseball be able to do the same?” Though obviously practicing and having a full season in the summer are two very different things, Sean and his supporters believe it would be worth it to save the season for spring athletes.
In barely over a week, Sean’s petition has received over 12,000 supporters, of his 15,000 goal, as well as spawned other petitions that have gained an additional thousands of supporters. It is assumed that, when the petition reaches that goal, it will be brought to the NJSIAA, with hopes that they will review and approve it. In fact, this story has already caught the eye of many major news sources, and NJ.com and The Daily Record have covered Sean’s petition, and with luck this attention will be able to spark state and national interest in the story.
But how does this affect EC? Well, obviously, if the proposal were to be approved by the NJSIAA, Eastern Christian would be allowed to hold its spring sports over the summer as well. Additionally, multiple spring athletes loved the idea, with senior softball player Amanda Segreto saying, “I think it’s a cool idea, we won’t have to worry about anything in school and we’d still have a chance to play before seniors go off to college...I really want to have a chance to play with my teammates and HCA players one more time.” Even now, student-athletes are trying to stay in shape for the season, with the hope that the pandemic will not prevent them from participating in their last season of sports. This petition would hopefully allow for seniors, their years of hard work and training, to get paid off one last time before they go off to college.
Students around New Jersey support this petition, and seniors at EC are desperately trying to find ways to save their last season, as senior golfer Sam Faber said, “I think everybody is just missing time spent with teammates, especially seniors you grow together throughout high school and we all want to spend one last time together with them on the field. “
To support this petition, go to change.org and search “Sean Wodell” or follow the link below.