Photo provided by WAFB-9.
COVID-19 has recently caused the postponement of all sports activities for Washington High School. This includes not just games but also practices and conditioning. This isn’t the first time since the pandemic that this has happened; in fact, it is the second occurance. The first time sports programs were temporarily suspended was when the lockdown was initially placed during the Spring season of early 2020. Now, another round of sports postponements has occurred due to a statewide spike in COVID cases.
Students and teachers share similar feelings of disappointment towards the postponement of sports this year due to COVID. Ms. Quezada, a teacher and athletics coach at WHS, said “It is extremely unfortunate for all our student-athletes who missed out on their spring season last year. And now this year with the Fall Season/Season 1 also getting pushed back [it] is unfortunate.” Koa Mark, a senior student athlete for volleyball at WHS, is especially disappointed due to the timing for him: “Since this is my last year in high school, I wanted to make some senior memories of the sport I played, but unfortunately it looks like it won’t happen.”
Photo provided by Boston Children’s Hospital.
The future of sports this year at WHS is uncertain due to COVID. Teachers and students believe that certain measures would help keep everyone safe, if and when sports become available again. Koa suggests that “players should wear masks at all times and no audience can come. Playing with a mask seems difficult, but it’s safer to do that.” Ms. Quezada has even more specific suggestions: “Wearing masks, social distancing, ensuring equipment is disinfected, proper ventilation (when indoors), and use of hand sanitizer would definitely be a huge part of the protocols we would be following (among others) to ensure safety for all when/if sports do resume.”
According to WHS principal Bob Moran, conditioning pods for football, water polo, and cross country started the week of January 25th; Season 2 sports pods are currently scheduled to start February 16th. With COVID still spiking in California, it’s difficult to know if sports will fully reopen this academic year. Athletes are eager to begin training again, even if there are modifications due to COVID. Senior Jason Kozak, who is a student athlete for volleyball says, “I’m anxious to get back in the gym, and won’t mind any restrictions they have.”