Winter school sports can begin playing games Friday, RIIL announces

High School

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The Rhode Island Interscholastic League (RIIL) announced Wednesday that winter sports can start competing later this week.

The league said it’s been given the green-light to allow the following low- and moderate-risk sports to start playing games on Friday, Jan. 22: basketball, hockey, indoor track and field, gymnastics, and swimming.

While these teams have been able to practice, competition has been on hold since December.

“Although we are thankful to receive the authorization from the State of Rhode Island and everyone is anxious to play, we also recognize that each member school and our officials associations will need time to adjust scheduled and implement the new guidelines prior to hosting any competitions,” the RIIL statement read.

The state on Wednesday updated its Phase III guidance for youth and adult sports, which strongly encourages players to remain in stable groups, wear face coverings at all times, and get tested at least weekly.

Routine testing will help quickly identify student-athletes who are positive for COVID-19, put them in isolation, and notify their close contacts to prevent the spread of the virus.

Additionally, each winter sports team must have completed the required number of practices before their first competition.

The RIIL also encouraged each member school to take the appropriate time necessary to ensure they are prepared to host events.

For more information, visit the RIIL’s COVID-19 information page.

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