Clark County cancels winter high school sports, rest of state might still play – Reno Gazette Journal

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The Clark County School District canceled winter sports on Tuesday, but the rest of the state could still play an abbreviated winter, fall and spring sports schedule.

Clark County schools, with the exception of Moapa Valley, will not participate in winter season sports of boys and girls basketball, boys and girls bowling, flag football and wrestling.

Winter sports are scheduled to begin practice Jan. 2, with a six-week season to begin mid-January. Fall sports would begin with games in March, followed by spring sports in late April and May.

The Clark County announcement does not include fall or spring sports.

Moapa Valley is the only CCSD-school conducting in-person learning.

Spanish Springs' Mariah Barraza shoots with Desert Oasis' Trinity Shah covering her during the state playoff game at Lawlor Events Center last Feb.

Basketball and wrestling are still on Gov. Sisolak’s no-play list, so that restriction would have to be removed before being allowed to play in January.

The 5A, 4A and 3A Southern regions will be significantly impacted this upcoming season. The 2A and 1A Southern regions are still mostly intact (without Indian Springs, Sandy Valley and Spring Mountain).

Donnie Nelson, assistant director of the NIAA, said the office staff will be figuring out which non-CCSD schools will remain open to participate in the winter sports season and how to amend leagues as needed in the 5A, 4A and 3A.

Nelson said the rest of the state could still play winter sports, in Washoe County it depends on whether schools remain in full-distance learning mode, or return to the in-person model.

“We can always have the season delayed for WCSD schools if the return date gets pushed back, but still in time to conduct winter sports,” Nelson said.

He added that skiing is still able to compete this winter. 

Manogue sohomore Claire Eberle won the girls combined title in the state ski racing racing championships.

Winter sports were scheduled to begin practice for high schools on Jan. 2 with competition to run from Jan. 15 to Feb. 20.

But not in Las Vegas.

“The District will not participate in any season one winter sports … for the 2020-21 school year,” a CCSD statement said. “As a reminder, all schools are to remain closed for athletic purposes.”

The next WCSD board meeting is Dec. 8.

If the Jan. 4 opening remains in place, then nothing would have to change for winter sports, as long as basketball and wrestling are removed from the no-play list.

If the decision is made by the WCSD board to delay the re-opening of the hybrid model until Jan. 19 for schools, that could affect a variety of schedules within the Northern 5A and Northern 3A.

Nelson said the NIAA is already discussing options and and considering what may happen with California schools — Truckee, North Tahoe and South Tahoe.

Action photos from the McQueen at Spanish Springs girls basketball playoff game on Thursday Feb. 20, 2020. Spanish Springs defeated McQueen 59-36.

Nelson said the 3A North could be restructured with perhaps just six East League teams left, and the 5A/4A North cold also be restructured.

Nelson said neither the 17 school districts in Nevada, nor the NIAA, can afford to pay for COVID-19 testing, as pro leagues and college teams are.

Nelson said school districts are looking at a couple of potential programs possibly being covered by the state for COVID testing that would cover staff members and coaches , who would be included with teachers and administrators.

He said there is no funding for programs to test student-athletes.

He said colleges are conducting football and basketball because they have funding for those sports to conduct tests for players and staff members.

Also on Tuesday, the California Interscholastic Federation, that state’s governing body for high school athletics, said it won’t announce guidance for schools to return to practices or competition until after Jan. 1. The CIF also canceled regional and state championships for fall sports.

Utah played a fall football season, but put it on a two-week hold in November, allowing just playoff and championship games to be played. Utah is now preparing for prep basketball season.

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Jim Krajewski covers high school and youth sports for the Reno Gazette Journal. Follow him on Twitter @RGJPreps. Support his work by subscribing to RGJ.com right here

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