Playing During the Pandemic

TJ Students Return to Play

Jordan Hastie, Writer

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Leigha Plugge
Leigha Plugge
Leigha Plugge
Leigha Plugge
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High Schools in Frederick County have halted their sports seasons due to Covid-19. Playing contact sports during a pandemic is up for debate, with many students wanting to get back on the field. Student-athletes are trying to find different ways to get back out there, whether it’s practicing “Covid style” or playing for a club/rec league.

Here at TJ, sports haven’t stopped. Student-athletes are participating in RTP or Return To Play; socially distanced practicing. Coaches decide how many days a week they want their players to practice, for some three days a week and others all five. At these practices, teams are split into pods depending on the size of the group and kept in those pods while socially 6ft apart.  The drills being run are more offensively focused, so players are limiting contact with each other. It might not be a real season with competition and games, but at least they are practicing and honing their skills.

Finley Curtis, a freshman participating in Girls Lacrosse and Field hockey stated, “I love going to RTP, I can get out of the house and it creates mental motivation for me to get up and do something.” Many student-athletes also look forward to practicing with their friends and getting to escape their homes for a little while. Curtis also remarked, “Because of covid social interaction is much needed.”

So far, no student-athletes at TJ have contracted the virus from going to RTP. Precautions are being taken very seriously. Masks are worn at all times when social distancing isn’t possible, and also worn when athletes go to and from their designated practice spots.

If not practicing at TJ, many athletes are partaking in Rec Leagues or club teams to get in real gameplay. Due to the constrictions of the school system during Covid, different leagues have been created to let players have gameplay, even if it’s not counted towards a season title. Soccer, Lacrosse, Girls Field Hockey, Swimming, Baseball, Softball, Basketball, and Flag Football are all running leagues/ club teams in or around Frederick County.

A handful of boys who play soccer at TJ have been participating on the FC Frederick club team, to pass the time and keep in shape for either college play or are underclassmen prepping for next season. Hector Alvarez, a senior at TJ playing for FC Frederick stated, “FC Frederick has handled Covid 19 extremely well, there have been no positive cases that have come to my attention and social distancing and mask are enforced off the field.” There are plenty of non-FCPS affiliated opportunities for all sports to play during covid.

Frederick County Public Schools might not be opening up to have real sports seasons, but students still have practice and rec leagues to get them through. The most important thing for all of us in the community of Frederick to remember: wear a mask and stay safe. Stop the Spread!