Greater Sealy Little League announced May 18 that the 2020 season would not happen due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the latest restrictions placed by Tex. Gov. Greg Abbott, according to a statement from GSLL’s Board of Directors.
Earlier that day, Abbott held a press conference and issued orders that would allow youth sports to resume practice on May 31 with only one parent or guardian per child spectating while practicing social distancing and wearing masks.
Abbott’s orders allowed games to resume on June 15 but GSLL President Joel Grigar said that was already too late in the summer for the Little League season that is normally finished by the end of May. In addition, the international Little League World Series tournament that is normally held at the end of August was canceled April 30.
GSLL’s Opening Day was originally scheduled for March 21 this year but after a postponement to April 18, that too was unable to happen and the board decided to cancel the spring season altogether. The board also announced in its statement that coaches would communicate with parents to issue the uniforms and pennants that have already been paid for.
“Because of the timing of the disruption of the season due to COVID-19, registration fees collected for the 2020 season have already been spent on uniforms, equipment, insurance, charter fees, and field maintenance. The GSLL does not have funds available to issue refunds,” the May 18 statement says.
The statement concluded by saying the league will look to come back next year and will release further details about the annual raffle.
“We would like to thank you all for your patience during this unprecedented event. Nothing could have prepared us to go through a season like this,” the GSLL Board of Director’s statement says. “Thank you to our coaches and volunteers for their continued commitment and eagerness to make this league what it is. Our hearts go out to our players who have aged out. We wish them the best of luck in high school and beyond.”
Abbott has issued social distancing guidelines for when youth sports do resume. If individuals on at least three teams test positive for the virus, leagues would then work with state and local health authorities to decide whether the league could continue.
Abbott’s guidelines also said that youth sports operators are to notify all parents and guardians of increased risk for people 65 or older when they do resume, group trips will be strongly discouraged and he advised staff with underlying conditions shouldn’t attend sporting events.