On Wednesday, March 11, 2020 Louisville Baseball completed their sweep of Chicago State. They outscored the Cougars 26-5 over two games. We saw back to back homers from Henry Davis and Justin Lavey, Michael Prosecky had the best start of his career, and welcomed Lucas Dunn back to the starting line up. Sweeping this series moved the Cards to 13-4 on the season and gave them a three game winning streak. One that was sure to continue into this weekend when the Cardinal Nine would host Notre Dame in a three game series. Little did we know on Tuesday that these would be the last two games Louisville Baseball would play this season.

On Thursday, March 12 the NCAA, ACC, and UofL decided that it was in everyone’s best interest to cancel the rest of the season for all winter and spring sports, as well as all championship games due to COVID-19. This sent a shockwave through the entire country and I can honestly say I have never lived through a day that felt more surreal than this one. In fact, as I’m writing this, it still doesn’t feel real. I’ll never be able to understand how deep this cut is for all of the athletes who just lost out on their opportunities to finish out their season and make a run for a national title. The only thing I can understand is how I’m feeling for them and it’s a very sad and difficult feeling. But I’m not writing this to to tell you all how sad I am or how sad I think the team is…. I’m writing this to say thank you.

First, thank you to Mark Blankenbaker, LJ Nesbitt, and Dave Scull. Without the three of you, I would never have gotten the opportunity to be a part of The Crunch Zone and cover this team. Second, thank you to the parents of our student-athletes. Your sacrifices and support are second to none. But mostly, thank you to the team. The impact you’ve had on the lives of others should not go unnoticed. Whether it was through community service, or simply from doing your job as a member of this team, you made a difference. Especially to the athletes who were playing their last season as a Cardinal, thank you for the memories you gave us all.

This is not the ending anyone imagined and this is not the ending this team, or any other student athlete deserves. The optimist in me hopes that this all blows over in a few weeks and things can be re-evaluated. The realist in me knows how unlikely that is and there are several athletes that will never get to wear a Cardinal uniform again. So once again, thank you for your time here and your dedication to the team and the fan base.

Stay safe CardNation. See you all next season… unless this madness chills out and we get this season back.. I’m holding onto hope. I can’t help it.

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