High school softball, boys tennis approved to start Aug. 10; boys golf starts on schedule | SteamboatToday.com

High school softball, boys tennis approved to start Aug. 10; boys golf starts on schedule

Steamboat Springs freshman Eli Ince turns to watch doubles teammate senior Joey Westmeyer return a serve during a match against Fruita-Monument on Friday, Sept. 20, at the Tennis Center at Steamboat Springs.
Shelby Reardon

STEAMBOAT SPRINGS — High school softball and boys tennis have been given permission to play this fall and begin practices Aug. 10, according to a news release from the Colorado High School Activities Association on Wednesday.

Boys golf, which can play under current public health guidelines, will start as scheduled. Practices will begin Monday, Aug. 3, with competition starting on Thursday, Aug. 6.

The state’s COVID-19 response team approved the sports based on CHSAA’s submitted return-to-play plan.

CHSAA Commissioner Rhonda Blanford-Green announced the news at the association’s annual All-School Summit, which brings together all 363 athletic directors from CHSAA-member schools.

Tennis and softball will be permitted to start practices for the fall season on Monday, Aug. 10, with competitions beginning on Thursday, Aug. 13. CHSAA expects a response from the state regarding the status of the remaining fall sports by the end of the week.

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Tennis and softball will be played with modifications to ensure local, state and national guidelines are met.

In June, the CHSAA Resocialization Task Force, composed of medical personnel as well as school administrators and CHSAA staff, divided all high school sports into three categories: lower risk, moderate risk and higher risk.

Lower risk sports can be done while social distancing and not sharing equipment. Moderate risk involves sports that have close, sustained contact with protective equipment, rare close contact or that use equipment that can’t be cleaned between participants. Higher risk involves close, sustained contact with little protective equipment, increasing the probability that respiratory particles would spread between participants.

Tennis was deemed a lower risk while softball was deemed moderate risk.

CHSAA sports ranked by risk

Low risk sports: golf; sideline cheer; skiing; swimming; tennis; unified bowling

Moderate risk: baseball; cross country; field hockey; gymnastics; lacrosse; soccer; softball; track and field; volleyball

Higher risk: basketball; competitive cheer/dance; football; ice hockey; wrestling

Other states have been announcing plans for fall sports as well. Some states heavily affected by COVID-19 are making major changes, either pushing back the start of some high risk sports, like football in Texas, or moving fall sports to the spring, like in California.

To reach Shelby Reardon, call 970-871-4253, email sreardon@SteamboatPilot.com or follow her on Twitter @ByShelbyReardon.

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