Hoping to peak later in the season before running in college, DeSales girls track and field runner Anya Vanasdale admitted she wasn't entirely upset about the delay to spring sports caused by the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

Vanasdale, a senior distance runner, missed most of cross country season because of a stress fracture in her left foot. Without classes in the morning because of schools being closed at least through Friday, April 3, Vanasdale does her homework in the late morning and early afternoon before running five to six days per week and supplementing that with cross-training.

"If the season isn't canceled, this (delay) will be really beneficial," Vanasdale said. "It's been kind of surreal. ... It's best to try to keep a sense of routine (in order) to get your work done. I feel like I have some flexibility.

"It's good to be in a routine. I think it's better for your mindset."

The OHSAA instituted a no-contact period through at least this weekend, although teammates can communicate and coaches are allowed to send their players suggested workouts. The earliest spring sports could begin after the initial shutdown is April 11, following a five-day acclimation period.

Update: Gov. Mike DeWine announced March 30 that schools will remain closed through May 1.

DeSales senior Owen Faulkner hopes his next game is on a baseball diamond rather than a football field. A senior shortstop, Faulkner has signed to play football at Akron and occasionally has joined a few teammates at various parks or in one of their backyards for informal work.

"It helps a lot. With us, it's tough because we don't all necessarily live near each other like guys at a public school might. It's just a way to help with our skills and our team building," Faulkner said. "It's difficult to work out by yourself. All of us want to get work in. All of us want stuff to do."

The Beechcroft girls track and field team has one of the state's top returning runners in senior Makiya Montgomery, who won the Division II state title in both the 100 and 200 meters last season.

She and her teammates were reclassified to Division I this spring -- as were the DeSales boys and girls teams -- and are hoping to compete.

"I asked them to stay active," Cougars coach Mike Moncrief said. "I've texted them probably every other day since we've been out of school and they know what they should be working on. Whether they're doing it or not is a whole different question. We're trying to keep them positive.

"Our kids work so hard. On the flip side, we understand. We want the kids to be safe and for people to be able to live their lives. We have a girl who could conceivably win a state title in Division I and that's the hardest thing to deal with."

DeSales boys track standout Isaiah Thomas, who placed eighth in the 200 at last year's Division II state meet, works out twice a day, including running on a workout trampoline.

"Sometimes we post our exercises via video or just by telling others what we did," said Thomas, a senior who helped the Stallions' boys bowling team to its first Division I state tournament and simultaneously ran indoor track. "I've been working on track since November. I can't wait for this season."

The four-time defending City League champion Northland girls track and field team has nearly 40 athletes competing and returned all but a handful of its top competitors from last season.

"A lot of them know what to do on their own," Vikings coach Tom Fast said. "The distance runners go on neighborhood runs. The sprinters have a lot of equipment at their houses. The nice thing about our team is that they're actually into fitness. As a coach, I didn't give them any workout schedule. I just said to do the best to stay healthy that they can.

"Overall, we could be a better team this year, which is why we want the season to get going. If we resume April 20, we could have about four weeks' worth of meets. (If they canceled the season) that would be devastating. I understand the health part of it because (I had a family member die) of the flu in 2008."

Vikings junior softball player Jayla McKinnie, who started at second base last season, has been doing cardio at home as well as trying to stretch every morning.

"My family and I go on walks every other day with my dog to go out and get some fresh air," McKinnie said. "My teachers have been very diligent about keeping our classes on track, so I tend to spend a lot of my time keeping up with school work.

"If the season was to get canceled, I wouldn't know what to do with myself. Softball tends to be the highlight of my year and I'd be devastated to see it get canceled. Sports don't only keep me active, they also keep me motivated and focused."

DeSales boys lacrosse player Mason Rickens, a Rutgers recruit, said he has tried not to think about potentially losing his senior season.

"I'm very disappointed, but as a faithful person, I just try to remember that whatever happens happens for a reason," Rickens said. "Obviously, I'd love to play my senior year, but at least I have a college future to look forward to."

ThisWeek reporter Jarrod Ulrey contributed to this story.

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