A COVID-19 update, and a couple of diamond cuts on this Thursday…..

Good Thursday morning. Scores in a moment, but we want to take some time to update you on the plans to restart high school sports in Washington following the COVID-19 pandemic.

As you know, the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association has pushed back the start of the fall sports season to early September as it tries to better finalize what things will look like this coming school year. The plans were discussed at the local level last night over in Kennewick at the Kennewick School District’s board meeting, of which our friend and fellow colleague Matt Evans from the computer rankings website Evans Rankings was in attendance. Evans tweeted out a photo – which we have already retweeted for you on our Twitter page at @snovalley sports – of a photo slide shown at the meeting outlining the possible WIAA plans.

According to the information, the association has two plans in mind – one, remaining as is with the previously implemented delay, or what is more likely at this point based on what other states and even community colleges are doing, delaying it all the way to after the first of 2021. What that entailed according to the presented info at the meeting last night would be to have winter sports – basketball, wrestling and gymnastics – maintain their normal schedule in January and February, followed by fall sports – football, volleyball, girls’ soccer, swimming, cross country, golf, tennis – in March and April, then spring sports – baseball, softball, boys’ soccer, golf, tennis – take center stage in May and June, all with abbreviated seasons and playoffs.

So what could such abbreviated seasons look like if that comes to pass? Well, it’s a lot simpler in Kingco with the league split into two divisions, it would be most likely to see all play occur within the divisions only, meaning Mount Si would in the majority of cases not see any teams from the other division, meaning very little Bothell, Woodinville or the other Northshore schools and more of Issaquah, Skyline, Eastlake and Newport. As for Cedarcrest, as Wesco is not split into divisions as far as we know, most likely that could entail similar geographic requirements to allow for the school to play the schools closest to it in league play. There was one caveat, though, and that was for play to occur, the counties specific districts are in would have to be at phase four in the state’s COVID-19 restart plan, but cross country with likely modifications possibly could run in phase three counties, meaning that Kingco could, in theory, if it shifted their cross country operations over to, let’s say Kittitas County and the Cle Elum area, which is now in phase three, they might be able to do that season as normal in the fall.

But as you might guess, all of this is in flux, and based on comments made earlier this week by Gov. Jay Inslee in his COVID-19 news conference in which he suggested potential rollback of the reopening due to a major rise in the number of cases of the illness among people in our state, particularly younger people, it may be a long while yet before some counties are able to have sports again. Or full in-person school.

So with that all said, the association will make a decision next week on all of this and we’ll be sure to let you know. In the meantime, as families here in Washington await word, two more states yesterday indicated they remain on track for normal fall sports at the high school level. Both Idaho and Pennsylvania indicated as much, with the Pennsylvania high school athletic association making their announcement on Twitter and Idaho’s high school association chief indicating his state’s desires in an interview with a Coeur D’Alene-area newspaper. Two more states that could be prime transfer fodder for Washington athletes should there be long delays in the start of high school sports here this fall.

To our scores. Youth baseball. Action from Gamechanger and the Gamechanger app, available on Apple IPhones and IPads in their app store.

Washington A’s 18U Premier 6, City Baseball Green 5 (game one, doubleheader): The Sammamish-based A’s finally got to start their local play in the Seattle Premier League yesterday, but had to go all the way out to the beach to do it. The A’s outlasted Seattle-based City in the first of two at Pioneer Park in Aberdeen with the help of Mount Si grad Harrison Clark, who went 2-3 with a walk and two RBI’s.

Washington A’s 18U Premier 6, City Baseball Green 0 (game two, doubleheader): The A’s took advantage of five City errors to get the nightcap win and doubleheader sweep. Grays Harbor County, which Aberdeen is located in, is currently a phase three county in Washington’s on-hold COVID-19 restart plan, allowing for games to occur with no fans present. In a separate doubleheader last night following the A’s twinbill, the Kirkland-based Merchants Premier and Seattle-based Baden split the pair.

Rhett Workman

About Rhett Workman

Rhett Workman is the editor of the Snoqualmie Valley Sports Journal. Workman is a veteran sports journalist, having covered Snoqualmie Valley sports for nearly a decade with the Snoqualmie Valley Record newspaper before starting up the SVSJ. Workman's coverage has earned the support and respect of Valley coaches, players, parents and fans, and the SVSJ continues the standard of coverage that Workman brought to the Valley Record.
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