Penn-Trafford sports workouts resume with safety modifications
Tuesday, July 7, 2020 | 8:02 PM
Penn-Trafford resumed athletic workouts Tuesday but with new provisions to its health and safety guidelines.
The school’s voluntary summer conditioning for fall sports teams was paused Friday after Gov. Tom Wolf gave clarification on mask-wearing for indoor and outdoor workouts and discussed the importance of self-quarantining after out-of-state trips.
Penn-Trafford’s “Athletics Task Force” immediately revised its plan to include student-athletes having to submit vacation plans before they can participate in a sport.
Wolf said anyone from Pennsylvania who travels to one of 15 “hot spot” states after July 3 must self-quarantine for 14 days. That also goes for Penn-Trafford student-athletes who can return to sports following the quarantine, if they are asymptomatic.
Penn-Trafford athletic director Kerry Hetrick said the modifications are not because anyone around Warriors athletics has contracted covid-19. They strictly are precautionary.
“We want to stay on top of things as they change,” Hetrick said. “We felt the need to adjust our plan. We’re going to do what makes the kids the safest. Things are going well, and we want to keep it that way.”
The hot spots are Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Nevada, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Utah.
The guidelines also say a Penn-Trafford athlete can choose to get a covid-19 test on their own when they return from vacation. A negative result could allow them to return sooner than 14 days.
If an athlete tests positive for covid-19 and already has participated in workouts, coaches must report information to Lisa Popovich, the school nurse. Any athletes who had direct contact with an infected athlete must quarantine for 14 days.
Athletes are using Google Classroom, where a daily check sheet is filled out and reviewed by coaches.
Fall sports began summer workouts June 22 but had to stop Friday through Monday.
Winter and spring sports started voluntary workouts July 1 but quickly were halted.
Penn-Trafford wants teams to continue to work in small pods during summer workouts.
Parents are asked to be forthcoming with any information about exposure to the virus at home or otherwise.
Penn-Trafford also is enforcing the Pa Health Department’s mandatory wearing of masks. Unless athletes are engaged in drills or competition, they must wear a mask and maintain social distancing.
While the plan is not meant to be a pace-setter, Penn-Trafford believes it is fluidly aligning with the state’s guidelines.
Hetrick said Dr. Kevin Wong, P-T’s medical director, “feels our plan is exemplary and is a model for others to follow.”
“We are staying on top of this as changes continue daily, and we will adjust to let our student-athletes participate in the safest manner possible,” Hetrick said.
Bill Beckner Jr. is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Bill by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter .
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