HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - The Big Island Interscholastic Federation announced this week it’s cancelling fall and winter sports this school year.
It joins the Maui interscholastic League and Oahu Interscholastic Association in calling off football for 2021.
However, the Interscholastic League of Honolulu isn’t calling it quits just yet and is exploring options to potentially begin a number of sports including football, baseball, and volleyball in early March.
Ultimately, everything hinges on Honolulu’s coronavirus tiered reopening system, which doesn’t call for school sports until the least restrictive tier.
“We looked at the timeline and it was like, it’s impossible,” said Damien athletic director and head football coach Eddie Klaneski on how the tier system has already impacted half of the sports calendar.
“There’s no way to go from Tier 2 to Tier 3 to Tier 4 and be able to have games by February. That was why those high risk sports were canceled.”
Klaneski has been heavily involved in discussions with ILH officials and hopes a plan can be developed soon.
In lieu of a state tournament, a likely setup would be a condensed all-ILH schedule. Consistent testing is also a key factor.
“If we’re able to get testing done weekly or bi-weekly or twice a week before a game, that would help us,” Klaneski said. “I think people would be more confident in being able to play and do that.”
But constantly hovering over potential plans is the city’s tier system, which will keep all sports on the bench if COVID-19 cases continue to rise.
“Until it’s safe to open up and until the mayors let us go or the governor lets us go or the superintendent lets us go, the decision is kind of made for these athletic directors and the principals. so it’s not as simple as what people understand,” said Hawaii High School Athletic Association executive Director Chris Chun.