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Getting back on the field

Tom Passmore
tpassmore@the-leader.com
Addison girls soccer co head coach Kay Peters talks to her team.

Despite everything that has transpired with the COVID-19 pandemic, one Section V team is excited to be back on the field.

Even though Section IV postponed all high school athletics until January, Section V has pushed on even with the thought of the season potentially being cut short due to an outbreak in the back of their minds.

“The girls have been anxious to play,” Addison varsity girls soccer co head coach Kay Peters said. “We were hoping to play, but we didn’t know. We respect the people that are trying to keep us safe. They [the kids] know if we don’t do things correctly, it could be shut down.”

With high school athletics on hold since March, athletes were ready to get back on the field and return to some sort of normalcy. Some sports at some schools in Section V kicked off practice Monday.

“It feels good to be back, but it feels different this year,” Addison senior defensive midfielder Kihara Gotshall said. “It’s still the game I love to play, but with the mask wearing and everything. You just have to look at the positives.”

Masks have been mandated by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association and state officials for soccer September 11th stating:

“individuals must wear acceptable face coverings, unless players are unable to tolerate a face covering for the physical activity.”

Soccer was deemed a moderate risk sport by state officals and the NYSPHSAA.

Some new wrinkles to the rules to combat mask wearing is two new hydration/mask breaks that are going to be allowed in this version of soccer at the first dead ball situation after the 20-minute mark.

Wearing a mask while playing soccer could prove to be difficult with the constant movement of players around the field, but the game stays the same.

“With protocols changing, I think our girls have been troopers,” Addison co-head girls soccer coach Kim Driskell said. “I thought initially coming in, it was going to be absolutely awful, but they’ve dealt with it knowing everyone is in the same boat. We’ll be smart, resting players here and there, but I don’t forsee see any issues with the changes.”

Even though there is going to be a season, it is a shortened season due to the late start. Sectionals could be a possibility, but as with everything sports related -- nothing is set in stone.

“It hurts to have the shortened season, to know time wise we just don’t have as much time as we would like,” said Driskell.

Addison’s first game is tentatively scheduled for 6:15 p.m. Oct. 7 at home, but is subject to change.

Addison girls soccer players go through drills at the school.