Chapman athletic teams increase precautions to avoid COVID delays

Being an athlete during a pandemic can be challenging, especially with all of the obstacles they have to face. 

Athletes rely on practice and conditioning around other athletes to keep themselves in the best condition possible for their sport. This can become difficult with quarantining and social distancing restricting the amount of work, practice, and games these athletes can put in. 

Chapman athletes aren’t immune to the challenges facing this season, but they have thankfully been smart to protect themselves and others. 

“I tell our girls to shrink your friend group, like at a football game or in the car you don’t want to be with a ton of different people,” said varsity volleyball coach Shane LeCroy. 

These quarantines can make things difficult for different sports because the amount of games a team plays can determine how the rest of the season goes, and for some sports, missing just one or two games is ten percent or more of their season gone. 

“I think for sports like football who only play once a week losing games can be very detrimental, and when we lose opponents that is just a missed opportunity for our athletes to compete,” said Athletic Director Greg Wilson. 

This fall hasn’t exactly been ideal for any athletes, but according to Wilson, this season so far has been a lot more productive and has run smoother than last fall. 

Last year all sports had to be started at different times to avoid more contact than was necessary. They started the more distanced teams first, like tennis and golf, then slowly progressed to football and cheerleading, which require you to be closer to each other. However, this year every fall sport was able to start at the same time without mask restrictions and temp checking. These things have made this year so much easier with games and competitions. 

Athletes and coaches have understood what needs to be done and have been doing their best to protect themselves and their season. If there is a threat of COVID-19 they make sure to protect their team and quarantine so no one else gets taken out and the team can continue practice as normal as possible. 

“Though there is still a threat of COVID this year has run a lot smoother than last, and I think our teams and coaches are doing a great job of taking proper precautions,” said Wilson.

Although all the teams are following the proper precautions nothing is 100% and things still happen. Teams still get quarantined despite following procedure and when they do they have to do their best to get their season back on track once they get back. 

“We would all have to shut down for whatever period of time then once we get back we would have to try and make up whatever games those lost games,” said LeCroy, “but as we are getting closer to the end of our region so it’s more difficult to makeup games and if we were to shut down during playoffs, your out of the playoffs and we would have to forfeit our match.” 

COVID has taken so much from people, and for seniors, this is their last year to make their mark and they want to do everything they can to make the most of their season and make sure it isn’t taken away from them. 

“I think for our seniors they realize that this opportunity can be taken away from them really quickly so they have been really good about being leaders and expressing the importance of taking precautions and shortening your friend group,” said LeCroy.