NMAA cancels spring sports and state cheer competition

Coronavirus pandemic puts a halt to prep sports in New Mexico

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The New Mexico Activities Association on Friday (March 27) held an emergency board of directors meeting to address the future of the spring sports season and the state cheer competition, which was supposed to be held in late March. 

Neither of those will be happening, as the NMAA announced that both will be canceled amid the coronavirus pandemic that has shaken the sports world locally and across the globe.

The decision came after New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham and the New Mexico Public Education Department announced on Friday morning that the remainder of the school year for grades K-12 and public colleges would be canceled. 

Already, the NMAA had suspended the spring sports season and was hoping to put on the state cheer competition at a later date. But that was two weeks ago, and times have changed in that short sequence. 

"We are disappointed inside," Taos baseball coach Miguel Quintana said after the news broke that the remainder of his team's season would be canceled. "But we also know that the situation we are in right now is bigger than the game."

That decision to suspend competition came around the same time as the state basketball tournament that was being played out in early March. 

On Wednesday (March 11), NMAA associate director Dusty Young sent out a press release stating that fans would be barred from attending the remaining of the state basketball games through Saturday (March 14). 

On Friday afternoon (March 13), the NMAA made its decision to suspend spring sports before they were outright canceled earlier today (March 27).

Taos athletic director Nickie McCarty said it was hard news to take in, but that ultimately she understands the decision. 

"It's a sad day," McCarty said, echoing NMAA executive director Sally Marquez's email to athletic directors across the state.

New Mexico now has 191 positive cases of COVID-19 and one death has occurred from it. Eight of those cases are in Taos County.

The NMAA in May will meet again to discuss summer activities such as practice and “scholastic eligibility for the 2020-21 school year.”

This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

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