Eugene, OR. -- From high school, college and professional athletics, COVID-19 has impacted sports at every level. Maybe the most heartbreaking news came Thursday when the NCAA men’s and women’s tournaments were canceled.
The coronavirus outbreak has impacted teams in more ways than one could imagine, Oregon State being one of them. The Beavers (23-9, 10-8) lost in the quarterfinals of the Pac-12 Tournament. However, as any team would attest, anything can happen in March. Oregon State felt it playing its best basketball towards the end, which makes the abrupt ending to the season that much more difficult.
"I just felt numb. I didn't know how to feel,” said head coach Scott Rueck. “I'm sad, I'm angry, I was all of these things because you want the best for your students. We talk all the time about how it's bigger than basketball. This is not just games on the court. This is also not having a banquet their senior year because that's been canceled now. It's not getting to sit there and watch their highlight video. And I'm not trying to make Mikayla cry right now, but these are the things that go straight to my mind. They're not going to get that."
On Friday the NCAA Committee granted another year of eligibility to thousands of college athletes whose spring seasons were abruptly cut short. As for the winter athletes, specifically basketball players, their futures are still in question. The NCAA is exploring the possibility to provide similar relief to those players. If given another opportunity, Oregon State guard Mikayla Pivec would take full advantage.
“If I do get another year of eligibility, I would take that in a heartbeat,” said Pivec. “If there is the WNBA draft and I don't get another year of extra eligibility, then I'd pursue that."
"They're going to be missed so much if they don't end up getting this year back,” said guard Aleah Goodman. “But I can't think of a class that is more deserving because of everything that they've done. There is no way they should go out this way. They deserve so much more.”
The Beavers ended their year with a quarterfinal exit from the Pac-12 Tournament.