High School Sports

COVID forces changes to athletics schedules

By Dennis Silva II | Sports Editor
Posted 10/21/20

The Katy ISD athletics department is juggling schedules after several COVID-19 cases were reported.

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High School Sports

COVID forces changes to athletics schedules

Posted

The Katy ISD athletics department is juggling schedules after several COVID-19 cases were reported.

After the novel coronavirus forced the postponement of the Oct. 2 Tompkins-Clear Springs football game by one day due to three positive cases discovered in the Tompkins program that week, the district reported more cases within four high school athletic programs in the last week, as of Wednesday, Oct. 21.

A COVID-19 case in the Katy High football program postponed the Tigers’ Oct. 15 game against Tompkins to Nov. 27 at 11 a.m. at Legacy Stadium. Cases were reported in the Taylor High volleyball program that forced the postponement of the Mustangs’ district games on Oct. 16, Oct. 17 and Oct. 20. Mustangs coach Louise Crite said her team should return to the court for this Friday’s game against Mayde Creek.

On Oct. 17, the district reported a case in the Mayde Creek football program. The Rams’ game against Katy scheduled for Oct. 22 was postponed to Dec. 3 at 6 p.m. at Legacy Stadium. Instead, Katy will play Cinco Ranch, which was scheduled to be idle this week, this Saturday at 11 a.m. at Legacy Stadium. And, finally, on Wednesday, Oct. 21, cases were reported in the Seven Lakes volleyball program, postponing games as of Oct. 20. The Spartans are expected to resume play Nov. 3 and any games miss will be rescheduled in alignment with UIL rules and District 19-6A guidelines

To take place of the Cinco Ranch game initially scheduled for Oct. 31, Katy will play a non-district game against Dickinson at noon at Rhodes Stadium that day. Katy and Dickinson were supposed to play Dec. 4 before Dickinson canceled that game to play a district game postponed due its own district’s COVID-19 reports.

Per Katy ISD protocols, members of each program deemed in close contact with the positive individual received direct notification from campus administration, which provided information to ensure the well-being of each person involved.

All players and coaches in each program that revealed a case of COVID-19 were required to get a test. A negative test is necessary to return to practice and/or play in a game.

The rescheduling of each game that had to be postponed provides the district’s Emergency Management team enough time to conduct contact tracing and ensure student-athletes and staff are cleared to continue practicing and preparing for games.

Katy ISD also expanded its employee COVID-19 testing services to its students: Monday-Friday, 7 a.m.-4 p.m., at 5801 Katy Hockley Cut-Off Road. The service provides rapid testing for $125 per student. Results for the testing are said to take about 30 minutes.

COVID-19 has yet to force Katy ISD to cancel any games. When the district re-scheduled its football and volleyball seasons in August after the UIL released its revised 2020-2021 athletics schedule, Katy ISD made sure to backend schedules to have flexibility for makeup games should that be necessary.

District football and volleyball games were scheduled sooner than usual. The non-district season, primarily scheduled before the start of district play, was split between the start and end of the regular seasons. The move gives Katy ISD the ability to cancel non-district games at the end of the regular season should district games need to be made up from earlier in the season.

That has already been implemented. Tompkins was scheduled to play Cy-Ranch in a non-district football game on Nov. 28, but since its district game against Katy last week was postponed, the Falcons canceled its arrangement with Cy-Ranch and will play Katy on Nov. 27. Katy already had that week open because it had not been able to find a non-district opponent to fill out the schedule.

“Due to the COVID-19 impacted fall season, district competitions have been and will continue to be adjusted, where possible, to ensure teams have the opportunity to compete against all district opponents,” Katy ISD said in a statement.

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