Winter high school sports in New York are currently in a holding pattern.
With COVID-19 cases rising throughout New York, state officials said Monday that they are less likely to allow “high-risk” indoor sports this winter. Those sports include basketball, hockey and wrestling. No official decision has been announced, but Gov. Andrew Cuomo and other top state officials doubt whether winter sports will be able to take place.
“As we’re seeing the inclines in different parts of the state, we’re not inclined to go ahead with opening the winter sports at this time,” State budget director Robert Mujica said on a conference call with reporters, per lohud.com. “We’re continuing to look at those numbers, but the numbers right now don’t indicate we are going to expand them right now.”
In August, the New York State Public High School Athletic Association announced it would delay the beginning of winter sports until Nov. 30 in order to give fall teams more time to complete their seasons. On Thursday, Section III announced that winter sports can begin Monday, Dec. 14. However, basketball, ice hockey, wrestling and competitive cheerleading have all been deemed high-risk sports by the state health department, leaving them in uncertainty.
Bowling, gymnastics, indoor track and field, skiing, swimming and diving have all received clearance to proceed with their seasons. In Section III, swimming and diving has been moved to the “Fall II” season in March. Gymnasts are currently competing this fall.
“At this time, authorization has not been provided for high-risk sports to begin play,” Zayas said. “The high-risk sports start date continues to be examined and will be revised if needed but is contingent upon authorization from state officials.”