HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The NCAA’s decision to cancel winter and spring sporting events around the country has ended the careers of some of Manoa’s most decorated athletes.
16 teams from a host of different sports have had their seasons abruptly cut short.
With no practices or games to take place, athletes and coaches have begun to navigate an unprecedented time in the program.
Friday afternoon, the Warriors men’s volleyball team and Wahine basketball team both landed back in Honolulu.
The athletes that spoke to Hawaii News Now said they support the NCAA’s decision to cancel the tournaments and seasons due to the outbreak of COVID-19.
However when the news came athletes were still devastated and left wondering what could have been.
“It’s really disappointing,” said UH Men’s volleyball player Rado Parapunov. "We probably would have had the best season -- we were one of the best two teams in the country.”
Fellow senior volleyball player Colton Cowell says the team is still processing the events that have transpired.
“It’s kind of the abrupt ending of a career," said Cowell. "It was unexpected, shocking for a lot of us and we’re still dealing with the emotions that come into play with something like this.”
The Warriors volleyball team was ranked as high as No. 1 in the country, while the UH Wahine basketball team was set to play in the Big west Tournament semi final on Friday night.
For senior guard Julissa Tago, the emotions of not getting to compete in her final season, are heartbreaking.
“It hurts because I knew we were going to win,” said Tago. “That’s why it hurts there was a lot of tears and a lot of sadness.”
The ending of the seasons didn’t just stop the games, but also put a halt to one of the University of Hawaii’s most celebrated events.
“The biggest letdown for me is not having senior night,” said UH volleyball player Patrick Gasman. "That’s a super magical moment -- for all of our graduating guys and I was hoping to have that with my team.”
Despite the sadness over a lost season, there may be relief headed college athletes way.
One media report has indicated that the NCAA is having discussions about granting another year of eligibility to spring athletes whose seasons were cut short by the abrupt cancellation.