Greg Magni and John Bussard, Central Valley’s and Ceres High’s athletic directors, have had to modify sports calendars this month due to COVID-19 protocols.
Other schools from Stanislaus County have also had to postpone games, matches and events in response to student-athletes testing positive for coronavirus.
“It changes daily,” Bussard said. “Every five minutes, I’m adjusting. It’s chaos.”
“It’s very reminiscent of what we went through last year,” Magni said. “We’re making it work the best we can. You have to be creative. All I can do is what’s in my control. My No. 1 goal is to get the athletes to play safely.”
Central Valley’s boys basketball team had four league games postponed.
The Hawks were supposed to play Golden Valley, Buhach Colony, Atwater and Merced on Jan. 14, Jan. 12, Jan. 7 and Jan. 5, respectively. The contests have been rescheduled.
The Central Valley girls basketball team’s games versus Merced on Jan 6 and Buhach Colony on Jan. 11 were both rescheduled.
Central Valley wrestling dual meets against Buhach Colony (Jan. 6) and Golden Valley (Jan. 13) were canceled. Buhach Colony filled in for Merced.
“Other schools had COVID issues,” Magni said.
Central Valley’s girls wrestling program was looking forward to competing at the Jan. 7-8 Napa Valley Classic. The event was canceled.
“We were ready to go,” Hawks’ coach Rob Beckhart said. “We passed testing. We were informed that the host team (Vintage High School) canceled the tournament due to the rising cases of COVID-19.”
The Central Valley-Merced girls soccer game scheduled for Jan. 7 was postponed.
Ceres High’s wrestling and junior-varsity boys and girls basketball programs were shut down for 10 days following positive tests.
Wrestling meets at Johansen (Jan. 12), Grace Davis (Jan. 17) and Beyer (Jan. 19) have been canceled.
“They’ll be coming back,” Bussard said.
The Ceres High boys basketball team’s contests against Grace Davis today and Pacheco on Jan. 10 were postponed.
Ceres High’s girls basketball team was supposed to play Los Banos last Thursday.
“We had to cancel games but not due to us,” Bussard said.
“It’s been hectic this last month,” Ceres High varsity boys basketball head coach T.J. Walker Jr. said.
Indoor sports teams are required to be tested for COVID-19 every week.
“We’ve been following the guidelines we were given by Public Health,” Magni said. “We’ll test more if needed.”
“We do our best to stay safe,” Beckhart said. “Sometimes, it’s not enough. I understand it’s scary for some people. I had a kid quit because he didn’t want to get COVID. His grandma passed away from it and his mom got it.”
Spring sports were canceled during the 2019-20 school year and athletics were delayed in 2020-21 due to COVID-19.
“I don’t want to think about going back to where we were,” Bussard said. “I can foresee potentially a pause happening this school year.”
“It’s always a thought in your mind,” Beckhart said. “But you can’t control that. We’re going to wrestle as much as we can.”