Central Ohio school districts determining course for winter sports

ThisWeek Sports Staff
ThisWeekSPORTS.com
With several central Ohio school districts pausing athletic activities, it's unclear when the winter sports season will tip off for numerous area programs.

All Ohio Capital Conference contests have been postponed through Dec. 17 because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, according to commissioner Ken Baker.

In an email sent Nov. 20 after a meeting of the OCC executive committee, Baker said the move is effective immediately and “the timeline coincides with the 28-day period” recommended by Franklin County Public Health and the city of Columbus.

Gov. Mike DeWine on Nov. 17 announced a 21-day statewide curfew, in effect 10 p.m. to 5 a.m., starting Nov. 19, and Franklin County Public Health announced a 28-day stay-at-home advisory, running Nov. 20 through Dec. 18.

“This action was taken to protect our student-athletes, staff, communities, and to comply with the requests of the department of health,” Baker said.

According to an email from Worthington Kilbourne athletics director Jeff Todd, the executive committee will meet Dec. 11 to assess conditions and determine if the pausing of league contests will be extended. 

The move affects only league contests, meaning non-league contests still can be played.

The decision comes a day after several area school districts announced they were pausing athletic activities, and at least one has canceled all games through the rest of the calendar year.

Groveport Madison athletics director Steve Petros confirmed Nov. 19 that his district is pausing all activities through Nov. 29, the Sunday after Thanksgiving. Teams can resume practices the next day, but all scheduled events have been postponed through December.

“We are hoping to resume competition in January,” Petros said in an email.

Below is the status of central Ohio districts, as of Nov. 19:  

*Bexley: Contests suspended through Dec. 18; practices allowed

*Big Walnut: No change in status

*Canal Winchester: Contests suspended through Dec. 17; practices allowed

*Columbus City Schools: Activities suspended through Dec. 17

*Delaware: Pending school board discussion and approval Nov. 23, the district does not anticipate its teams competing before Dec. 18. The status of practices also will be discussed.

*Dublin: Contests suspended through Nov. 30; practices allowed

*Gahanna: No change in status

*Grandview: Activities are suspended through Dec. 1, when the situation will be evaluated as to whether to resume practices from Dec. 2-18. Contests are expected to resume Dec. 19.

*Groveport: Contests suspended through Dec. 31; practices allowed to resume Nov. 30

*Hilliard: Contests suspended through Dec. 20; practices allowed in pods of 10

*New Albany: Contests suspended through Dec. 17; conditioning and training for out-of-season sports suspended, practices allowed

*Olentangy schools: No OCC contests through Dec. 17; practices and games against non-league opponents allowed

*Pickerington: Contests suspended through Dec. 17; conditioning and training for out-of-season sports suspended, practices allowed

*Reynoldsburg: Activities suspended until Nov. 30

*South-Western (Central Crossing, Franklin Heights, Grove City and Westland): Contests suspended through Dec. 17; practices allowed in pods of 10 

*Upper Arlington: Contests suspended through Dec. 17; conditioning and training for out-of-season sports suspended, practices allowed

*Westerville: Activities suspended until Dec. 4

*Whitehall: Contests suspended until Dec. 18; practices allowed

*Worthington: Following OCC plan; practices can continue but out-of-season workouts suspended

Other area schools, leagues:  

*Capital Hockey Conference: No games "through the end of November," according to the league's website

*Central Catholic League: Contests suspended through Dec. 18; practices allowed

*Columbus Academy: No activities while school is on Thanksgiving break. A decision will be made following the break on how to proceed.

*Columbus School for Girls: Activities suspended until Dec. 7

*Grove City Christian: No change in status

*Worthington Christian: No change in status

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