Pennsylvania Governor Halts Prep Sports Until Jan. 4

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High school sports in Pennsylvania were shut down the same day they started.

Pennsylvania governor Tom Wolf announced new COVID-19 mitigated measures on Thursday, including pausing all sports for kindergarten through 12th-grade students until Jan. 4.

โ€œCOVID thrives where people gather together,โ€ Wolf said on Twitter. โ€œThe measures announced today will target high-risk environments and aim to slow the devastating spread of the virus.โ€

According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the new measures, which come amid rising COVID-19 cases, were announced on the same day that the Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association allowed games for winter prep sports to start. With the order going into effect at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, some games will likely be played before the shutdown. Winter teams have been allowed to practice since Nov. 20.

โ€œWe kind of expected this to come. We will adjust accordingly,โ€ said Amy Scheuneman, executive director of the Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League, which sponsors basketball, wrestling, swimming, gymnastics, rifle and cheer in the winter. โ€œAt our meeting, we talked about โ€” regardless of what was decided (by Wolf) โ€” we will move forward with a plan to allow schools to have as much time as possible to play contests. We hope those efforts are successful and we hope we are back Jan. 4.โ€

The PIAA, which was able to hold seasons this fall, announced Thursday night that it will update its membership with a Friday press release. A new PIAA rule requires teams that donโ€™t practice for more than 14 days to hold four days of practice before playing a game.

Related content: Mask Mandate Creates Confusion for PIAA

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