BISMARCK, N.D. - It was a bad day for annual high school all-star sporting events. Three of them were cancelled Friday.
The Lions All-Star Basketball games, the Optimist All-Star Volleyball series and the Badlands Bowl football game were called off due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Randy Johnson is the Executive Secretary of the North Dakota High School Coaches Association who selects the athletes for the basketball and volleyball contests. He said they look at a lot of options with the decision to cancel being put in place today, "We investigated a lot of different way to possibly still have the games. The one problem is we are restricted because we would have to have it in June or July and so that's just where the decision came. I think down the road the Lions were just having trouble also having to go to various small businesses that have been hit so hard from this pandemic and ask them for possible sponsorships so I think that had a lot to do with it as well."
Johnson said it's unfortunate for the players because it is a once in a lifetime opportunity. Randy said the Lions Club is looking at a way to recognize the players at a later date.
Just like Lions Basketball, the Optimist Volleyball series was schedule to play in July.
The Dakota Bowl would have been the final game in the North Dakota vs. Montana All-Star Football game but it will not happen this June.