The NHIAA announced Thursday afternoon that it is canceling the 2020 spring sports season.

“In response to the recent Executive Order by New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu to continue remote instruction in New Hampshire schools throughout the remainder of the school year, the NHIAA Council has made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 spring sports season and championships,” the NHIAA’s press release reads.

Over recent weeks, hopes for a spring season began to dwindle as the number of coronavirus cases grew and the first New England state, Maine, made the decision to cancel the spring sports season.

This news is especially devastating to the seniors in high school who will not have an opportunity to play their final spring season.

“This decision was not made lightly given what athletics mean to the participants, parents, and communities across the state,” the release reads. “While it was our hope to salvage some portion of the spring season, the fact that schools will not reopen their doors to students this year and the uncertainty surrounding when or if social distancing guidelines will be lifted has made us face the stark reality that playing high school sports this spring is simply not an option.”

As the NHIAA Executive Director stated previously, ‘sports pale in comparison to this.’ This decision confirms that notion and the NHIAA is there to help serve the student-athletes’ well-being on the field and off.

“Rather, our focus in these most uncertain times must be to do everything we can to protect people from the pandemic and not contribute to the numbers who fall victim to the disease,” the release reads.

The conclusion of the release mentions that the decision to cancel spring sports will hopefully allow the spread of the virus to slow and leave open the possibility of the fall season — potentially the next battle for the NHIAA months ahead.