High School AD Pauses Fall Sports Over House Party

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First-year athletic director Mia Muzio announced last week that all Wilmington (Del.) High School athletics will be suspended through Nov. 9 following an Oct. 23 house party where 25 to 30 high school kids engaged in underage drinking and failed to follow mask-wearing and social-distance guidelines.

"We have been made aware that there were current student-athletes at the party," Muzio said in a statement. “Due to this incident, Wilmington High School athletic contests and practices will be postponed, effective Monday, October 26th until Monday, November 9th. This two-week time frame is consistent with the guidelines set by the Massachusetts Department of Health.

“We please ask that everyone please stay diligent about following all health and safety protocols. The Wilmington High School Athletic Department will continue to provide athletic updates in a timely fashion.”

As reported by the Wilmington Town Crier, two adults from Wilmington were charged Oct. 26 with purchasing alcohol for minors, while one girl at the party had to seek medical attention that evening due to alcohol consumption.

The incident and its aftermath left WHS coaches frustrated, as teams struggle to scratch out a season amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“I feel just extreme disappointment and a little bit of anger," soccer coach Sue Hendee told the Town Crier. "A lot went into trying to make this season happen with rule changes, modifications and preparations. There was a lot that went into this season and to have it shut down because of irresponsible people is incredibly frustrating.

“I feel really sad for those student-athletes who do the right thing, seniors especially because they realize that this is their last shot at playing and it's hard."

Added field hockey coach Leanne Ebert, "Disappointed is really the word to use right now. We obviously talked all about the new rules and regulations for this season and now a small group of people who didn't follow the rules and regulations have now affected a much larger population, and that's disappointing."

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