St. Mary’s Springs moves football, high-risk sports to spring; Omro to play all sports in fall
The St. Mary’s Springs Academy Board of Directors has moved football, boys soccer, girls volleyball and cheerleading to the spring.
Legendary football coach Bob Hyland’s 50th season at Springs is delayed until 2021 when the alternate fall season begins in March. Hyland has participated in a traditional fall season every year since 1971, his first year with the private school.
“We have determined the move to spring provides the best opportunity for our student athletes to experience as close to a ‘normal’ season as possible,” the SMSA Board of Directors said in a statement. “We do not see this as cancelling these sports, but rather moving them for safety purposes in accordance with the FCHD (Fond du Lac County Health Department) and giving students a fighting chance to play a more traditional season.
“The goal being to allow families and fans an opportunity to enjoy the sport together in spring, as current conditions would not allow for spectators to be present in our facilities.”
Springs has one of the strongest small-school athletic programs in Wisconsin high school sports, and its football team is arguably the best. MaxPreps ranked Springs the second-most dominant Wisconsin football program of the past decade.
Hyland is seventh in United States history and first in Wisconsin with 478 varsity football wins.
“The Board does not take this decision lightly, recognizing how important athletics are to our long-standing history,” the board said.
Girls tennis and boys and girls cross-country will continue their seasons during the traditional fall sports season. The decision to move high-risk sports to the spring was made after being advised by the Fond du Lac County Health Department.
Omro’s school board, meanwhile, decided the school can play its high-risk sports against East Central and South Central conferences at a Monday night meeting.
The move was well-received within the program during a pandemic that has cost many teams their seasons.
Omro’s low-risk sports will continue with the Flyway Conference.
Contact Jerell Rushin at 920-279-4974 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter at @jerellrushin_.