H.S. winter sports season set to begin

Gov. Scott gives approval for school-based and youth recreational sports to being holding practices Dec. 26th
Published: Dec. 22, 2020 at 7:19 PM EST
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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - The announcement supporters of high school sports have been waiting to hear since around Thanksgiving finally arrived just days before Christmas.

“We will be moving into a phased restart of youth recreation and school sports.”, said Gov. Phil Scott a Tuesday’s press conference, and with that announcement, the high school winter sports season in Vermont has finally arrived. The governor announcing that high school teams, as well as other school-based and youth recreation sports teams, may begin holding practices as soon as this Saturday, December 26th.

They will be limited on scope...only individual skills training, strength and conditioning will be allowed at this time. “This means no contact, physically distanced and wearing a mask at all times.”, stressed Scott.

Still, this was exciting news for the dozen or so people gathered outside the Statehouse Tuesday who came to show their support for starting youth winter sports. They included Bryce Ilsley, the senior at Oxbow and member of the boys basketball team speaking for maybe every young athlete in the state.

“It’s just good news all around.”, said Ilsley. “Everything that everyone did that it is going to make it happen. It’s a good start. It’s good news. At least we will get on the court again and do what we love.”

So practices may begin, but games are still up in the air. The Vermont Principals’ Association initially set a January 11th date for when games could begin, but in light of Tuesday announcement, VPA associate executive director Bob Johnson says that start date will likely have to be pushed back.

“I don’t think so, because they’re going to spend at least two weeks doing the conditioning in the practice sessions, as what they announce today.”, said Johnson. “Then you have to get into another couple of weeks of having actual competitions, whether it’s scrimmages or things of that nature. I really don’t think will see the January 11th, but maybe shortly thereafter.”

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