The LHSAA officially cancelled the springs sports season on Thursday. Area baseball coaches are heartbroken, but certainly understand the situation. West Monroe head baseball coach Wade Simoneaux even saw it coming.
"I kind of expected it, you know with everything else being shut down," Simoneaux said.
"Well my mom told me," Rebels' senior Gage Breithaupt said. "I was just in shock, you know, because we worked so hard this year, you know. It just kind of brought tears to my eyes a little bit."
High school careers are cut short by COVID-19.
"Yeah, it was real tough," senior Cayden Pierce said. "You know you put four years of dedication into a craft you love with some guys just to have it taken away is something that was really hard to take this morning."
"It kinda all came so fast," senior Austin Achord said. "You knew it was coming but you didn't expect it to actually happen but we had a good team this year and it's just kind of sad."
West Monroe fans had this weekend circled on their calendars for a slugfest with rival Ouachita. Instead, Shelby Aulds field will remain vacant.
"We had hopes of coming back, and now our hope's gotta turn until summer," Simoneaux said. "I'm hoping we can play this summer but that's kind of iffy right now too."
Over at Neville the finality of a nine-game season is setting in.
"We kind of knew that something was going to be coming out and it's disappointing for the seniors, for sure, but it's something we talked to the kids about a lot of times and it's a good lesson," Neville head coach Paul Guerriero said. "You tell kids you never know if this is gonna be your last pitch and a lot of these kids never knew that the last pitch that they played was gonna be the last one."
At Sterlington, Mark Sims' Panthers will not get the opportunity to go after their third title in four years.
"You know it hurts, and then you know you gotta send out a message-you can't even meet with them and talk to them and you know, it's tough, but there's, you know, a lot more important things in life."
The West Monroe seniors refuse to let the coronavirus be the lasting image of the 2020 season.
"Man, honestly our chemistry, we all loved each other," Breithaupt said. It was fun playing with them."
"My best friends-I'm real close to all the seniors on this team and that's definitely something that I'll remember for the rest of my life," Pierce said.