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Local coaches react to fall sports changes

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Eau Claire (WQOW) - We have a start date for fall sports. What we don't have are all the details.

Teams, schools, county officials and the WIAA will all work in the coming weeks to determine a safe way to hold a fall sports season.

One of the biggest changes to sports that are considered high-risk is the length of the season. Volleyball falls in that group, which means teams are not able to take the court until September 7th.

One local coach feels the sport can be played with social distancing, and the late start is costing his team precious team-building time.

"I don't see it any different than tennis in a way," Elk Mound head coach Ryan Grimm said. "If someone could think about switching it to a lower- risk sport and starting our season on the same date. August is always fun because you get to play in those different tournaments and really work out the kinks against other teams that are doing the same thing."

Cross Country is on the other end of the COVID-19 spectrum, and deemed low-risk by the WIAA.

Eau Claire North High School' start date has not been affected by the decision, and is confident it will be able to run a full season.

"If certain contingency plans are put together and we're prepared and have a higher level of preparation to this then we've had, I think there's a lot of optimism around the season," said Huskies head coach John Maki. "I'm glad something is happening. We have direction, we're being told something."

The WIAA said Thursday the dates are for planning purposes, and does not guarantee the seasons will be completed.

To compensate, the WIAA will provide schools the opportunity to compete in the spring semester if they cannot compete in the fall.

Rebecca Fiala

Rebecca Fiala joined the News 18 Sports Team in December 2018 as our weekend sports anchor and sports reporter.

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