CLAREMONT — The state of athletics is now in a holding pattern in the Green Mountain state as Vermont has decided to wait a bit to determine when the winter high school sports season may begin, the Vermont Principals’ Association along with Vermont Gov. Phil Scott announced on Tuesday. On Friday, Nov. 13, the state of Vermont halted all recreational sports and today the same rules were extended to high school sports as well.
The state has seen a bump in out-of-state visitors around each major holiday observed during the pandemic thus far, though far fewer than were reported in 2019. Scott said he has “a lot of tools in the toolbox” to use should virus numbers surge following the holidays but hopes he won’t have to.
In New Hampshire, all systems are go for launch as each school will be able to determine what steps to take in addition to the New Hampshire Interscholastic Athletic Association guidelines.
In Newport, informal basketball practices are scheduled to begin on Monday, Nov. 30, with masks being mandatory at Wheeler Gym.
Kearsarge Regional High School will follow a similar path as basketball prep will start with two scheduled openings each week until the middle of December and then go full speed ahead in anticipation of games beginning in mid-January.
Schools in the Fall Mountain Regional School District will be going fully remote next week and athletics will not be allowed to begin until next year, according to several parents of students.
Stevens High School head basketball coach Ivy Condon is planning on starting ”skills and drills” next week. Tryout are set to begin on Monday, Dec. 14.
After a short stint in Division II, the Cardinals will head back into the Division III bracket joining Kearsarge, Fall Mountain, and Newport. Schedules are being set up as the local athletic directors will be working overtime to get games aligned for an anticipated Monday, Jan. 11, tip-off.
The New Hampshire teams will again use a regional schedule just like they used for the fall season and it looks like our region will have local teams from Newport, Mascoma, Sunapee, Kearsarge, Fall Mountain, Hanover, and Lebanon. The big issue for scheduling will be the requirement of wearing masks during games as some schools will only play teams who also wear masks during the game.