COVID-19 scraps Mehock Relays; May spring sports uncertain

      For only the second time since World War II, Mansfield's Mehock Relays has been cancelled.

      The threat posed by COVID-19, the coronavirus, has wiped out the 2020 Relays, which had been scheduled for this weekend. The annual event draws top high school track and field athletes from surrounding states and Canada.

      Meanwhile, Mansfield Senior High athletic director Kevin Porter said the Ohio High School Athletic Association has not made a decision about spring sports in May. April’s schedule was cancelled.

      The OHSAA said last week that baseball, softball, lacrosse, tennis and track and field seasons will be scrapped if Gov. Mike DeWine extends school closings beyond May 1.

      The Mehock Relays has been cancelled only six times, including this year, since the event’s inception in 1927. There were no Relays during World War II, 1942-1945. The annual spectacular was wiped out by a snowstorm in 1982.

      The Relays were moved to Ashland University from 2011 to 2013 while Mehock Field, located at Malabar Intermediate School, underwent an extensive renovation.

      Tyree Shine, Senior High track coach since 1976, expressed disappointment for his seniors who will not be able to participate during their final year of Relays eligibility.

      Tyger Angelo Grose, who graduated early this year to join the Michigan State University football program, was the Mehock Relays top male athlete in 2019. He won the long jump and the 110-meter hurdles, then went on to place third in the OHSAA long jump finals.

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