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Viral pandemic puts high school sports on hold

News Sportswriter

All Alabama schools and athletic contests have been canceled as a result of the continuing fear of coronavirus.
Escambia Academy headmaster Hugh Fountain said the school reached its decision Friday evening.
“The decision was based on reports from the Centers for Disease Control and Alabama Health Department officials,” Fountain said Friday. “With Spring Break on schedule for next week, it felt like the right thing to do, with the current situation at hand. It also worked out with the scheduling.”
According to Fountain, all active sports and school functions have ceased until the situation is reevaluated on April 6.
With active schedules in baseball, softball, soccer and track and field currently in progress, Fountain stressed that schedules for makeup games and meets will also be reevaluated then.
“Prom and other school functions that are scheduled for the near future will also be reevaluated at that time,” Fountain said. “Our number one priority is the kids, faculty, staff and families. We will see what the future holds and follow what the state recommends and requires.”
Escambia County High School Athletic Director Scott Mason stressed that ECHS is in a similar situation.
“All sports are cancelled until further notice,” Mason said. “With baseball and softball in the middle of area play, it is horrible timing for our teams. However, the health and well-being of the students and community is the number one priority.”
According to Mason, like EA, all practices and games in all sports are cancelled until further notice. ECHS will also re-evaluate the situation on April 6.
“A decision will be made at that time for the schedule and format of future games if the situation improves,” he said.
Both coaches expressed concern over the uncertainty of the continuation of baseball and softball seasons as the cancellations come in the middle of area play.
Decisions on scheduling and the playoff formats will be revisited by the Alabama High School Sports Association and The Alabama Independent Schools Association at a later date.
Starting this Thursday, March 19, all Alabama K-12 schools have been ordered to cancel classes for at least two and a half weeks. Escambia County public schools discontinued classes at the end of the school day on Monday.