Unsigned athletes counting on senior season for college scholarships

Harrisonville Softball Team
Posted at 4:32 PM, Jul 30, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-30 19:31:15-04

SHAWNEE, Kan. — As school districts are finalizing plans for the start of the upcoming school year, it's game on for sports.

“I guess my take leading into senior year is kind of just, you gotta work with what you’ve got," said Nonnie Justice, a senior at Harrisonville High School.

As sports make their return, incoming senior athletes are looking forward to getting back to practice.

“I was pretty excited because it had been really hard this summer not doing anything with sports because I’m used to having offseason stuff," said Hailee Ricker, a fellow senior at Harrisonville High School.

For many unsigned athletes, their senior year is their last attempt at a college scholarship.

“The ones that are unsigned, it’s really a big time for them, it’s probably the most important year," said Dave Hix, Harrisonville High's softball and baseball head coach.

The Missouri State High School Activities Association said practices for fall sports can begin on Aug. 10 and competitions on Aug. 28.

Despite the good news, some athletes are concerned COVID-19 could still kick their season.

“I”m kind of just worried that we’re going to get started and then we’ll get shut down halfway through or maybe not even be able to play because that would be the worst case scenario I think," Ricker said.

The Kansas State High School Activities Association said fall activities, including practices and competitions, also can begin as scheduled.

“We really didn’t know, had no idea, just tried to be as positive as we could," said Ethan Kremer, a senior at Mill Valley High School in Shawnee.

With the announcement, athletes are hopeful safety measures will prevent illness and keep their senior seasons alive.

“I’ve received a couple of offers to play, but having a season this year will hopefully give me more exposure to be able to get more opportunities," Kremer said.