WIAA announces changes to high school sports start dates

High school fall sports are being pushed back to a later date - again.

The Washington Interscholastic Athletic Association Executive Board announced Tuesday tentative dates for high school sports to start, with several teams postponed to spring 2021.

“Since March, the philosophy of our Association has been to allow students every chance to participate,” said WIAA Executive Director Mick Hoffman. “We’ve asked our Executive Board and planning committees to be as creative as possible in allowing for those opportunities. These are tough and unprecedented decisions to make, but it has been inspiring to see so many people around the state come together to work on behalf of students.”

The WIAA Executive Board created four WIAA-sanctioned seasons, sectioning out sports from moderate to high-risk team sports, which will be moved to Season 3 and 4.

Sports teams considered lower risk - like cross country and slow-pitch softball - will start in Season 1, while riskier sports like volleyball and soccer will start at a later date. Here's a breakdown from WIAA: 

  • WIAA Season 1: Cross Country, Slowpitch Softball, Girls Swim & Dive*, Golf (Alternative Season), Tennis (Alternative Season)
  • WIAA Season 2: Basketball, Bowling, Boys Swim & Dive, Gymnastics, Cheerleading, Wrestling
  • WIAA Season 3: Volleyball, Girls Soccer, 1B/2B Boys Soccer, Football
  • WIAA Season 4: Tennis, Fastpitch Softball, Track & Field, Baseball, Golf, Boys Soccer, Dance/Drill

The Executive Board will meet in late July to create benchmarks for Season 1 to take place this fall. If the benchmarks are not met, the board said they will plan to move the remainder of fall sports to Season 3.

These dates apply to counties that are in Phase 3 or higher of the state's phased approach to reopening the economy. The new dates are fluid and could be changed as the pandemic continues.