Lincoln Northwest High School excludes varsity basketball for 2022-2023 season

Lincoln's newest high school is making changes to winter sports this season.
Published: Oct. 7, 2022 at 11:19 AM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (WOWT) - Lincoln Northwest High School’s 2022-2023 season will not include varsity basketball.

According to Lincoln Public Schools, the school will only play junior varsity, reserve, and freshman levels games for both girls and boys.

The school says student safety was a major factor in the decision to exclude varsity basketball.

“We have learned valuable lessons during our fall sports season that we carry with us as we navigate the rest of our first year,” said Northwest High School activities director Rob Psencik. “Putting student safety first, we are taking this unique opportunity to start slow and build our teams and players’ experience. By focusing on the junior varsity, reserve and freshmen level, we can focus on developing our young players. Next year, we will have competitive varsity teams for both boys and girls basketball.”

It’s also not the first time Lincoln Northwest stopped a game in the name of safety.

Injuries force a new Nebraska high school to forfeit its upcoming football game.

“This was a difficult but appropriate decision,” said LPS athletic and activities director JJ Toczek. “I appreciate the administration at Northwest being thoughtful and putting student safety, learning and success first.”

Any students at Northwest that want to try out for the basketball teams will need to fill out a winter athletics interest form.

The decision follows similar moves by other schools to cancel varsity sports. Schools in Iowa have made recent decisions to cancel football seasons.