The CIF-Southern Section announced Tuesday that it is canceling post-season competition for the rescheduled fall sports season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
But there is still time to get in a regular season provided enough progress is made in the reduction of positive coronavirus cases.
“The time remaining in the fall sports seasons can be utilized by our member schools to schedule contests,” CIF-SS Commissioner Rob Wigod said in a statement.
With no CIF-SS Championships, CIF State Regionals and State Championships, the sports of boys and girls cross country, 8-man and 11-man football, girls volleyball and boys and girls water polo have end dates of getting in a season: March 20 for water polo and girls volleyball; March 27 for cross country; April 3 for 8-man football and April 17 for 11-man football.
“We are not canceling the entire seasons for our fall sports, we are canceling the portion of fall sports seasons that we have direct control over, Southern Section Championships,” Wigod said. “Hopefully, the additional weeks now available during the fall sports season will be useful to our schools in the effort to have regular season and/or league competition in the time ahead.”
Under the state health guidelines for youth sports, cross country, golf, tennis and track & field can begin competition in the purple (widespread) tier of the state’s colored-tiered system of virus spread on Jan. 25. However, Gov. Newsom’s stay-at-home orders must be lifted in order for those sports to begin.
Football, volleyball and water polo are in the moderate orange tier.
“We strongly support our member schools in returning to play, provided the guidelines distributed by the California Department of Public Health and local health authorities are adhered to. We will continue to do all we can to advocate our position to those entities as well.” said Wigod.
Two football teams at private high schools schools in Orange County violated state health orders by playing each other in a football game last week.
Additionally, club competitions in various sports, including football, have been taking place on private property during the pandemic.
Wigod said high school spring sports remain on schedule.
“Several of our spring sports are in the purple tier, which means they can begin as planned, again, provided there is not a stay-at-home order currently in effect in Southern California,” Wigod said. “Also, if progress can be made moving forward, we are hopeful that other sports will be able to join those in the purple tier when they reach the appropriate tier for those sports.”
Wigod noted a decision on Southern Section Championships for spring sports would be determined in early or mid-April.
In the CIF Central Section, which inlcudes the schools of the Santa Maria Joint Union High School District and St. Joseph, March 26 is the recommended start date for football, with the season lasting four weeks, ending on on April 17.
— Noozhawk sports editor Barry Punzal can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Noozhawk Sports on Twitter: @NoozhawkSports. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.