Could there be a light that is peaking through when it comes to sports coming back to Halifax County soon? Governor Northam updated us last week on where we stand with opening up the state, and he unveiled a three-phase plan that shows how the Commonwealth will begin to open up. Beginning in the next week phase one should begin which is not much different to where we are now with the exceptions of gyms, salons and restaurants being able to open up with no more than ten individuals allowed in at a time. Phase one could last anywhere from two the three weeks.

Phase one does not help out when it comes to sports, but phase two is where we could see things get back to somewhat normal. The second phase allows for gatherings of up to 50 people while following social distancing guidelines and face masks recommended in gatherings.

The second phase opens up the opportunity for a lot of the sports around the county to possibly begin. Whether it is conditioning for football and other high school sports, or youth sports being able to begin, there seems to be a chance that the 50-person limit could help these get going.

As I wrote in the article in this paper, Dixie Youth baseball is planning on starting their season on June 29, and if things continue moving forward like they have been, I am going to go out on a limb and say that the season should be able to start on that date.

I know I am not the only one that is looking forward to that starting, not only for the kids but also for the community as a whole. Sports are not a necessity, but they are a distraction for us and they also provide an outlet for the children, especially since most have been cooped up in their houses for a while and haven’t been able to see their friends.

I have almost finished with my senior interviews with the spring sports athletes that had their seasons canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic. One thing that I noticed while speaking to each of the seniors and their coaches is that they are all hopeful to get back on the field and have some sort of showcase or scrimmage at least once before the seniors head off to college or wherever they plan on taking the next step in their lives.

Each coach has said that they are planning these events as well as having a senior night to honor these senior student athletes. When phase two goes into effect, I am hoping that these events will be able to begin. As I spend more and more time talking with the seniors it is apparent of how much losing this season hurt. They were all so excited to get on the field one last season and represent the Comets as so many have before them. They wanted to go out and give it their all to try and bring home one more district, region or state title to their school before they graduated. All of that was gone in the blink of an eye and it is so heartbreaking that happened to them.

It hasn’t happened to anyone before them, and it probably will not happen to anyone after, at least not for a long time. Every thing that is special about your senior year of high school has been taken away and altered in unique ways.

Like I alluded to recently, the staff and administration at the high school has done a wonderful job finding ways to give the seniors their prom, graduation and other things that they missed out on, but it still must be hard to not be able to file into the gym for graduation or walk into prom all dressed up.

As long as the data continues to show that the testing numbers are going up and the number of cases going down I truly feel that by the middle to end of June we will all be able to see each other out on a field somewhere in the county. At least we all can hope that’s the case.

Happy Mother’s Day

I just wanted to take a moment to wish all of the mothers out there a happy Mother’s Day! I hope you all enjoy your special day.

My mother has had a huge impact on my life. It didn’t matter what was going on in my life my mom was always there for me and still is to this very day. She has stood by me and supported me through everything and is such an important part of my life.

I am sure that I contributed to many grey hairs doing some of the things I did growing up, but she was always there for me no matter how good or bad it was. She wanted the best for my brother and I every day and she still does. She reads every word I write and makes sure to send me a text to tell me how much she enjoyed it. I believe she would tell me she enjoyed it even if it was a poorly written article, but I don’t mind because getting that from my mom is something I look forward to. She really is my biggest fan, and I am truly grateful for her and all the support she has given me throughout my life.

She is an amazing mother and grandmother who unselfishly gives so much every day and I just wanted to take a minute to thank her for all she has done for me and continues to do. I love you mom!

Johnathan Kirland is a sports writer for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact him jkirkland@gazettevirginian.com. Follow him on Twitter @JohnathanK_GV