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CIAC Postpones Start of Winter Sports Season

November 6, 2020 / Athletic AdministrationBasketballHockeySwimmingWrestling
The Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) announced on Thursday, November 5 that the start of the winter high school sports season has been postponed.

According to a story from The Hartford Courant, the start of the winter season was supposed to be set for November 21 and a new start date has not be agreed upon. The CIAC’s board of control plans to discuss a new start date at a November 17 meeting, The Courant reported.

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Photo: Wesley Sykes / Great American Media Services

“The CIAC understands that, upon approval of its winter sports plan, each member school will need some time to review that document with its local health department,” CIAC executive director Glenn Lungarini wrote in an email to member athletic directors, according to The Courant. “Therefore, the CIAC is postponing the November 21 winter sports start date.”

The board of control meeting was initially supposed to be on November 10, but due to the rise of a 4.2 positivity rate from 3.8 on October 28, they decided to push the decision-making meeting back to the 17th, The Courant reported.

Games were slated to start on December 7 in the Constitution State with the state tournament beginning in early February, according to a tentative schedule format from the CIAC back in October.

“We don’t want to be in a position where we start everything for a couple of weeks and then everything stops,” Lungarini told The Courant last week. “Looking at the numbers, and as we have conversations with our sports medicine committee, and the governor’s office and the DPH, we’ll get a better understanding of what may be the best practice in terms of starting.”

Local health experts who spoke with The Courant said they believe there is a potential to hold a winter sports season safely — if the proper safety modifications are put in place. Concerns include the fact that all winter sports are indoors, many include physical contact and the continuously rising COVID-19 metrics in Connecticut.

“If you get to a point where enough strategies are in place in the community and things are sort of more contained, if you’re able to test the players and coaches and you’re not finding cases, you’re putting precautions into place, the kids are signing some sort of agreement that they’re going to behave responsibly off the court or off the ice — I think there’s a potential kids could play,” Dr. Jaimie Meyer, a Yale Medicine infectious disease specialist and associate professor at the medical school, said to The Courant.

To read the full report from The Hartford Courant on the CIAC postponing the start of the winter sports season, click here