Low and moderate risk fall sports to start September 21 in Upstate NY, fall sectional tournament cancelled

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WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — Section III Athletics of the New York State Public High School Athletics Association announced their plan for fall sports on Friday.

According to Section III of the NYSPHSAA, fall sports will move forward with the guidance given from the Department of Health and association officials. This will allow practices for low and moderate fall sports to begin on September 21, 2020, and high risk fall sports to begin on March 1, 2020.

Section III Executive Committee members voted to proceed with this decision on September 11, 2020. However, the committee emphasize cancelling the fall sectional tournament competition. Additionally, priorities will fall on maximizing participation across all sports, keeping competitions local and maintaining back-up plans.

“We’ve received feedback this week from the majority of our 104 member schools.  More specifically, 97 schools responded with 58% indicating they are ready to begin fall sports, and 42% requesting a delay of fall sports until after January 1, 2021,” said John Rathbun, Section III Executive Director. “We understand the challenges many schools face and the difficult decisions superintendents, principals, and athletic administrators are being required to make to keep student-athletes, spectators, and sport officials safe. 

According to NYSPHSAA, low and moderate fall sports able to begin practice and competitions on September 21 are tennis, soccer, cross country, field hockey and swimming. High-risk fall sports are football, wrestling, rugby, hockey and volleyball.

Section III of NYSPHSAA includes Jefferson and Lewis County.

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