FORT MILL, S.C. (WBTV) - High school football conditioning is in full swing in South Carolina even after the first confirmed case of COVID-19.
On Monday, the Fort Mill School District announced that a person involved in the football program at Fort Mill High School tested positive for COVID-19. They did not announce whether it was a player or a coach, but because of the positive case, conditioning for that program has been cancelled for the rest of this week.
But things will go on elsewhere in the district and at Catawba Ridge High School, the Copperheads are optimistic that there will be high school football this season.
“It makes you nervous,” said Catawba Ridge head coach Zac Lendyak. “You think about these rising seniors. You think about these kids and you want them to have a season so we’ve told our guys and our coaches, that we’re going to do whatever we have to do to take steps to get there.”
With the first high school football case now a reality, caution will be heightened even more. Social distancing and masks are a must at the conditioning sessions at Catawba Ridge.
It starts with the customary temperature check and the health questionnaire. Whenever the players are not working out, they are required to wear a mask. When they do finally a get on the field to work, they are not required to wear the mask but some continue to wear them as this may be the new norm for this season so why not get ready right now.
“I think it is trending that way,” said coach. “I know a couple of the helmet companies have created some shields already. I would think we would have some sort of regulation or mask on just with the way things are trending right now.”
Speaking of mask, coaches are required to wear them at all times on the fields during workouts. And in the theme of social distancing, only 10 people are allowed on the field at one time. So in most cases, 8 players and 2 coaches are on the field. Bottom line, Catawba Ridge is doing all they can to keep everyone safe during this pandemic. But they can do everything right on the field, but as the kids go home to live their everyday lives, they can still pick up COVID-19 and that’s what makes this situation that more difficult to manage.
“Whether they are at the grocery store, the gas station, or the community swimming pool and we know if a kid gets it, the first thing they are going to say is ‘a football player’ so we understand that situation. We are trying to keep them safe. We want to take every step we can to get us back to playing football in the fall.”