The start date for local high school winter sports has been moved back to Dec. 14 due to an uptick in COVID-19 cases, Section VI announced Wednesday.
The announcement came one day after the New York State Public High School Athletic Association declared high-risk sports — basketball, competitive cheer, hockey and wrestling — would not start until at least Jan. 4, pending approval from state officials.
Wednesday's announcement pushes the start of low- and moderate-risk sports — bowling, swimming and indoor track, locally — back two weeks from the date approved by NYSPHSAA, Nov. 30.
"The Section remains committed to providing opportunities for our winter athletes," Brett Banker, president of Section VI and athletic director for the Ken-Ton district, said in a statement. "Much like the recently completed fall season when we did all we could, our leadership groups across the Section are working tirelessly for our athletes, families and our coaches.
"With the reality of where we are statistically, we need to assist our Superintendents and other leaders and pause for a moment. There are great people in the Section's athletic world working on the issues and who are fully cognizant of what these programs mean to kids."
High-risk sports remain scheduled to start Jan. 4, assuming they get the go-ahead from Gov. Andrew Cuomo's office.