Public League soccer, tennis players will miss out on state playoffs because of teachers strike

Cross country runners could also be impacted if the strike drags on.

SHARE Public League soccer, tennis players will miss out on state playoffs because of teachers strike
Young’s Aidan Chapman (23) moves the ball against Glenbard North.

Young’s Aidan Chapman (23) moves the ball against Glenbard North.

Kirsten Stickney/For the Sun-Times

Solorio’s soccer team was upset by Lane in the city championship last week. But the Sun Warriors, winners of the Class 2A state title in 2017, have rebounded emotionally from that loss and were ready to focus on a deep state playoff run. 

But the Chicago Teachers Union strike has likely ended the soccer season for all Public League teams. The students would have to be back in school on Friday to play in the IHSA state playoffs. 

“I feel like it is going to be really rough on me,” Solorio senior Rafa Soto said. “It would be a tough way to end my career.”

Sun Warriors coach Adrian Calleros says Soto and his fellow seniors are among the most accomplished soccer players the city has produced. 

“They were 22-1 last year and city champs, they’ve won 20 games again this year,” Calleros said. “They have worked their tails off for that kind of success and a shot at state this season. It’s sad to see it end like this.”

Calleros doesn’t believe most of his team really understands why the teachers are striking. 

“Being in high school and being athletes they don’t get the whole nurses point,” Calleros said. “Or really the classroom size stuff. They are coming from schools that have been overcrowded since they were in grade school. It is something they have just been living with their whole academic career so it is hard for some of them to understand.”

Soto is still holding out hope that somehow he’s back in school on Friday and allowed to play in the state tournament, but he says he does understand why the teachers have decided to strike.

“I talk to a lot of my teachers and they say it is more for the elementary schools,” Soto said. “For nurses and for it to be safe for all the kids. But there is a soft spot in me that is upset.”

Public League tennis players will also be impacted by the strike. Tennis sectionals are scheduled for this weekend. Boys and girls cross country runners could also miss out on the state playoffs if the strike drags on. Cross country regionals begin Oct. 26.

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