On March 16, it was announced that the TRU Wolfpack will cancel the remainder of the TRU baseball’s 2020 spring season: the first time in history that the school has ever cancelled a sports season. After coming off a successful fall season, the team claimed silver at the College Baseball Nationals, this came as a real blow to all players. It also raises questions on how this affects the eligibility of the fifth-year players.
“This is really disappointing, especially for the fifth-year guys as well as the first year-year guys who would have gotten their first taste of CCBC league and championship competition,” Head Coach Ray Chadwick said. “This spring’s regular season and a championship tournament will be moved to September and October later this year. The rosters that were submitted for eligibility this spring will be used in September. Basically, if you were eligible for this spring you will be eligible for the coming fall makeup season.”
The decision was made following a conference call among the league teams. According to Chadwick, the teams agreed for the safety of their players and the public, this was the best course of action to take.
Fifth-year student-athletes will be allowed to play in the fall, but not the following spring. Fifth-year players affected by the policy include Taylor Van Ham (Medicine Hat, Alta.), Zac Comeult (Maple Ridge, B.C.), Tyler Hodder and Josh Iannetti (Fort McMurray, Alta.), plus three Kamloops B.C. products: Connor McKenzie, Bryant Jameus, and Joe Davis.
“It’s super unfortunate honestly. We work all fall and winter to get prepared for the spring season. The fact that I won’t get to play in my fifth and final year hasn’t really sunk in,” member of the baseball team, Taylor Van Ham said. “The season will be played out next fall and the league made a rule that players can participate without being enrolled in classes so I’m just focusing on schoolwork right now and doing my best to stay in shape and stay ready for summer baseball and move into the fall for my last year.”
A number of the TRU players are planning to stay in the area this summer and play for the Kamloops Sun Devils. The start of their season is unannounced and dependent on precautions taken with the Covid-19 virus. Baseball will have to hold its breath and wait along with the rest of the world on what will happen next in these unprecedented times.