The CIAC has postponed winter sports until the new year, Naugatuck athletes express their thoughts

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Julia Kropo, Staff Reporter

For the past three and a half months, the students and teachers of Naugatuck High School have been experiencing a school year like no other. The students of NHS had thought they’d seen the worst from hybrid and online classes, wearing masks in the building, and permanently shutting down for weeks, but, then on November 17, news broke that devastated the athletes of NHS. The CIAC has postponed the start of winter sports until January 19, 2021, due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

The start of girls and boys indoor track, girls and boys basketball, and boys swim have been pushed into the new year. All high schools in Connecticut are now required to push back their conditioning, practices, meets, and games. This postponement will most likely also affect the start and duration of spring sports.

The CIAC, Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference, ultimately based their decision of postponing the winter season on the sudden rise of Covid cases within Connecticut. Connecticut has been experiencing an increasing 6% infection rate as well as an average of 2,289 Covid cases per day.

The conference stated that “the health and safety of our school communities are our top priority”. The CIAC made the safest choice for athletes’ physical health, but the mental health of athletes’ may suffer from the inability to play any sports for almost two months.

Students have expressed that sports keep them going and are an outlet for stress relief, school, and everyday life. But for others, sports are what’s causing stress in their lives. Some students from Naugatuck high school have expressed their feelings and thoughts towards the postponement of the winter season.  

Junior Matt Nofri, a member of the indoor track team, expresses concern about the winter season being pushed back. He states that “the winter track season being pushed back has affected my mental and physical health. It was my outlet from school and other life obligations”. 

Junior Steven Herb, a member of the boy’s swim team, feels similarly as well. He feels that “with the winter season being pushed back, I now realize how much I appreciate the sport and competing”.

While some athletes are upset by the postponement, others view it as a good thing. Junior Felicia Salvati, a member of the girl’s basketball team, feels as if her time off from sports will ultimately result in less stress. 

“The sports season being pushed back has affected my athletic life majorly but it has its perks. The perks include being able to catch up on my school work. This helps my mental health because I’m not as stressed about school and the sport of basketball all in one”.

The postponement of winter sports has ultimately impacted the athletes of the CIAC. If Corona cases keep rising within CT, the CIAC may change their plan and start date of the season. But for now, the winter sports season in Connecticut is scheduled to begin on January 19, 2021.