news 5 days ago

Foothills Council allows low-risk sports to play, moves soccer, others to spring

The Post-Star, Glens Falls, N.Y. — Pete Tobey The Post-Star, Glens Falls, N.Y.

Sept. 16-- Sep. 16--The Foothills Council on Wednesday announced that it is going forward with some low-risk interscholastic sports this fall, while moving soccer, field hockey and girls swimming to the early spring of 2021.

The league will allow varsity-only competition in cross country, golf and girls tennis, with practice beginning on Monday. There will be no spectators allowed at any Foothills Council event, and no junior varsity competition this fall.

Boys and girls soccer, field hockey and girls swimming were all moved to the "Fall II season," designated last week by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association as the window between March 1 and the first week of May.

Adirondack League president Daniel Ward said he would tabulate the results of voting by member schools and announce the league's decision later Wednesday.

Because of ongoing concerns over the coronavirus pandemic, NYSPHSAA had earlier moved football and volleyball, both deemed "high-risk" sports by the state Department of Health, to the early spring.

The Foothills Council release said every effort would be made to have league championships in each sport playing this fall. It outlined several rules and protocols for play, including roster limits of 10 for cross country and golf teams, and 20 for girls tennis.

Among the health and safety protocols: masks are required for all participants and personnel, unless an athlete is medically unable to wear one; students must supply their own water and supplies; when not competing, athletes must maintain 6 feet of social distance; no handshakes, fist bumps, etc.; and coaches/personnel must clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and equipment. If school is closed for in-person education because of an increase in coronavirus cases, school-sponsored sports activities would also be suspended.

"The sole focus is to provide student athletes with the safest competitive environment possible and ensure every effort is taken to safeguard the interscholastic athletic season from a potential shutdown," the media release said.

On Monday, the Wasaren League said it would be deferring all fall sports until the Fall II season in early spring. The Suburban Council said it planned to go ahead with fall sports, but that not every school would play every sport.

Follow Pete Tobey on Twitter @PTobeyPSVarsity.

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