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HS Football Team Exits Game Over Mask Complaints

Andy Berg

A high school football team in Oregon was pulled off the field after their coach expressed concerns about the other team not wearing masks. 

Santiam Canyon High School was taking on Culver High were playing their first game of the spring season. The game was in the third quarter when the Santiam coach walked onto the field and called his team to the sidelines.

In a video of the incident shared on Facebook, the coach can be heard saying, “If you guys are not going to follow executive orders and put my kids at risk, my kids at risk, do your job!"

State guidelines in Oregon require players to wear masks during the game.

"Attempts were made over multiple quarters of football to remediate the issue with the referees and opposing team, but met with no noticeable support or enforcement of the mandated mask rule," wrote Santian Canyon superintendent in an email to the local ABC affiliate. "Based on the information we have obtained, the difficult decision to pull our kids from the field is fully supported by school administration, as safety of student athletes remains a top priority. We are disappointed that these athletes lost an opportunity to compete, yet we are proud of their actions on the field that day and the way the situation was handled by our staff." 

Culver High School denied the allegations in an email.

"We met with the OSAA yesterday, and there was no mask issue. We have decided to not make any comments about the past,” Culver said. “We want to stay positive and professional, and look to the future." 

The Oregon School Activities Association has met with both teams and the referees and is gathering more information about the incident. According to the OSAA website, Culver won the game 8-0.

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