Winter Sports are a go?

Rushawn R. Baker, Staff Writer

Surprise Surprise, covid is still a main topic nowadays. If you love sports like I do you may be interested in the latest run down of winter sports. Many athletes are left with the question of  when will they start? And will there be fans?  But took it a little deeper.

So I interviewed some winter sports coaches and adults  in our schools, such as our principal. I asked some of the simple questions people maybe thinking,  like what the mask situation is with the athletes and what is the fan situation in general, also what sports are consider “ḧigh” and “low risk sports”,  also turns out there’s medium risk as well. 

The first person I interviewed, Mr. Siesto, our principal, We talked about the term “high risk”. He said he wouldn’t have used the term “high risk” and would use a description of “Level 1,2 & 3” he felt the term “risk” is getting at the wrong idea for most people. 

“Can we stop referring to some sports as ‘high risk’… There is no evidence in NYS, or any other state, that some athletes are more at risk than others.”

-Coach Mandile 


When I asked if he had the power to start these “high risk” sports on time, would he and how would he do so in the safest manner.  He Felt as if he wouldn’t have done anything differently, But he also said  “I think that as the school year has progressed, we have shown that while we are at school, the students and staff are safe and Covid is not spreading due to school activities including sports or clubs.” I agree.  

Photo Credit: Victor Boys Basketball

The next Coach Interviewed is Assistant Varsity basketball coach: Mr. Vistocco. When I asked about the term “high risk”,  he felt like the term high risk is over-generalizing most athletics and does not look at sports individually. 

 “For example, I do not feel like volleyball and football should have both been considered high-risk sports in the fall because one is a contact sport and one is non-contact. Having both of these sports considered high-risk makes it seem to me that it is not based on facts and numbers rather just an opinion.” 

On the idea of starting these “high risk sports” on time, Visocco felt that if he was in the position to do so he would have started all winter sports on 11/30. “Numbers show the school is the safest place for kids and I have not seen any statistics saying sports make it less safe. I think giving students the opportunity to be active and a part of a team is very important to the overall health and wellness of the individual as long as it is done safely.” 

Vistocco also believes the mask and fan situation will be similar but more strict compared to fall-1 because basketball is indoors.

Photo Credit: Victor Hockey

Next I was able to speak with the varsity hockey Head Coach: Mr. Ferreri We spoke about the start dates of “high” and “low” risk sports. “Low and moderate risk sports can begin on Monday 12/7 for our district (except indoor track) high risk sports have been postponed to January 4th… AND they still need to be authorized by state officials.” 

Coach Ferreri mentioned, as a team they tried to stay in contact as much as possible, but can only lift twice a week as of right now. But as any coach he is looking forward to the season and anything that can get them started up. “ We are also hopeful organized team activities are allowed to begin in a few weeks.  This will help when getting ready for the start of the season.” 

Coach Donroe the indoor track coach did not have much to say since Indoor track is in a unique situation, simply because they don’t have much info on their season while being listed under a “ low risk” sport. Here’s the twist: Indoor track does not start on the same date as these “low risk” sports.  

Section V has put it on pause with a tentative start date of 1/4.  There are other sports that are also on a pause for the winter season.” 

These athletes also have not been able to meet and train as a team. “We have not been able to meet as a team, but student-athletes have been able to receive training plans.”

Photo: credit: Democrat & Chronicle

Donroe is still hopeful, not handing the baton to the outdoor season just yet.  He is eager to kick off  things soon.