A Texas baseball team heads into a playoff game under less than ideal circumstances. Namely, there is a question as to who will be available after much of the team has fallen ill.
Dozens of people got sick after attending a Round Rock (Texas) baseball team banquet Monday evening, the Round Rock Independent School District told multiple news outlets.
Per KXAN-TV, Round Rock ISD spokeswoman Jenny LaCoste-Caputo says names more than 100 people developed gastrointestinal issues after the event where approximately 200 people were in attendance.
Officials told KXAN the event was held at The Milestone, an event center in Round Rock, but was catered by Round Rock’s La Margarita. Parents told KXAN that banquet attendees were served fajitas from La Margarita as well as cake and cookies that did not come from the restaurant.
According to the Austin American-Statesman, La Margarita in Round Rock closed its doors on Thursday for a deep cleaning. Eli Avilez, the general manager at La Margarita, said he closed the restaurant on Thursday out of caution.
“We take these things very seriously, whether it’s one person getting sick or 100,” Avilez told the American-Stateman.
Round Rock head coach John Carter told KXAN that 12 varsity players and 12 JV players are ill. This comes right before the team’s Thursday night playoff game against Akins (Austin) at Dell Diamond.
Carter told KXAN he started getting calls and texts about students and their parents being sick Tuesday night and that the number had grown to at least 114 people who had fallen ill. Carter added that his wife was at the event and became sick Tuesday night.
“And then this morning, about 5 a.m. I got four or five more,” Carter told KXAN, “And before I know it, I’ve got people saying their sick and getting a call from my starting pitcher tomorrow night saying he’s home sick. I said this is not a coincidence. Something’s not right here.”
Carter told KXAN players, two assistant coaches and others are complaining of vomiting, diarrhea, cramping and body aches. He said some JV players will likely step in at Thursday’s game.
A spokesperson for the Williamson County and Cities Health District confirmed to KXAN that an investigation into the outbreak is underway. A spokesperson at The Milestone told KXAN its staff works hard to keep spaces, including the prep kitchen, clean.
A La Margarita manager told KXAN the restaurant worked with the health district to inspect its kitchen Tuesday. The manager says his staff followed proper procedure in preparing the food that was served to the baseball team Monday.
The manager told KXAN this is the second year La Margarita has catered for the team’s banquet.