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Future Of Central and South Coast High School Sports Season In Doubt


The pandemic has disrupted many aspects of life on the Central and South Coasts.

For High School students, it’s led to the cancellation and postponement of traditional sports like football and basketball and there’s now more cuts but officials are hoping to still get some games in for the kids.

The last time the Southern Section football playoffs were officially cancelled was in 1945 because of World War 2.

This week, the CIF Southern Section – the high school section which covers Ventura County, Santa Barbara County and San Luis Obispo County - cancelled its playoffs for football and the rest of the fall sports because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Rob Wigod, the southern section commissioner of athletics for the CIF, says the move has been made to make time for schools to reschedule games in this season. 

"There's time until April 17 that football would be able to resume, and without having our championships on the schedule it now becomes time that schools can use to schedule games, and does allow hopefully to have some remaining time in this season - the fall," Wigod told KCLU News. 

Westlake High student River Ortiz plays water polo, basketball and tennis for the school. He says it's been disappointing to be unable to practice and play with his teams. 

"I feel mainly for the juniors and the seniors," Oritiz told KCLU News. "Because a lot of people want to play division one and this has taken away their chances to play division one sport. Some people may not have the money to go to college and this is their outlet to play sport and get their name out there. 

"They don't have the chance to get their name out there and it could take away their chance to get to college." 

The fall season was delayed and due to start Monday January 25 but is likely to be delayed again because of the Southern California stay at home order.

Credit CIF

Once it’s safe to be lifted, sports are possible only according to which tier they’re placed in. The Southern California region is currently set at purple tier. 

Wigod explains, "The sport of cross country can take place under the purple tier but right now we are under a stay at home order, but once that's lifted cross country can begin. 

"The other sports in our season are football, boys and girls water polo and girls volleyball. They need to be in the orange tier before they can begin competition." 

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