FGCU student-athletes coping as sports are canceled for the season

Reporter: Andryanna Sheppard
Published: Updated:
FGCU student-athletes cut the net after their season was canceled due to the coronavirus. (WINK News)

The future of most college sports is up in the air after universities ordered students off-campus and tournaments were canceled.

The FGCU women’s basketball team set itself up to win a championship this season. That’s not going to happen now.

On Friday, the players and coaches did what champs do—cut down the net. Each player and coach took a piece home.

“It felt like a funeral, honestly. It was so sad,” said senior women’s basketball player, Ashli O’Neal.

March Madness is over before it started, canceled because of the coronavirus. That means for these ladies, a sudden stop to the season, and for some, their college careers.

“I have to figure out how not to be a student-athlete,” she said. “I feel like I need to wake up tomorrow and go to practice.”

O’Neal transferred to FGCU hoping to play in the NCAA tournament.

“It’s really, like, an unbelievable feeling that we can’t finish what we’ve started,” she said.

Even though they didn’t have the chance to play for the championship title because Sunday’s game is canceled, they were recognized by the league’s presidents as the ASUN championships and the representative for the NCAA tournament. They will still get rings and they will still get a banner.

Spring sports athletes still have hope. The softball season is just on hold until April 5.

“I would do anything to put on that jersey again and go out there and give it all I have like we’ve been doing the whole season,” said senior softball player Mikenzie Vaughn.

The athletes said now is the time for them to lean on each other more than ever. They admit with sports on hold, they can now focus on their school work.

Classes will resume online only starting Monday.

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