December 2, 2021

League moves fall sports to March

Photo provided by New York State Public High School Athletic Association

The latest coronavirus-related domino has fallen for the fall 2020 high school sports season, as the Central Counties League has voted to postpone its fall season to March 2021.

Cincinnatus, DeRuyter and McGraw were joined by the other schools in the CCL — Brookfield, Madison, Otselic Valley and Stockbridge Valley — in a leaguewide decision announced in a letter sent to the Cortland Standard Friday.

The letter, signed by each of the CCL’s member schools, said the league’s decision “was made with sadness and disappointment for our student-athletes.”

“We understand the importance of athletics for our students and their physical and socialemotional well-being,” the letter read. “Ultimately, our most important priority is always to ensure that we provide a safe, healthy, and secure environment for the education of our students. When all factors are considered, we believe that the benefit of a limited fall sports season is out-weighed by the risk of potential COVID-19 exposures to our student-athletes, coaches, fans and communities, and ultimately to our school districts’ abilities to maintain in-person instruction during the 2020-21 school year.”

The decision leaves Cortland and Homer as the lone local high schools still planning to play this fall. Practices for the Purple Tigers, who play in the Salt City Athletic Conference, begin Monday at 2:45 p.m.

“We understand that the decision to postpone the fall sports season will be heartbreaking or many in our communities, particularly our student-athletes,” the CCL’s letter continued. “Please know that this decision is not a decision to cancel fall sports or to end all interscholastic sports for the 2020-21 school year, but rather to delay fall sports until March in order to provide our student-athletes with the best opportunity to have a safe and meaningful season. Like you, we look forward to the excitement of seeing our student-athletes compete once again. We thank you for your continued support and understanding.”