Sisolak loosens restrictions but high school sports still on hold | NevadaAppeal.com
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Sisolak loosens restrictions but high school sports still on hold

By Carter Eckl ceckl@nevadaappeal.com
Gov. Steve Sisolak gives an update on Nevada's COVID-19 response efforts and lifting of restrictions on youth and adult recreation sports during a news conference at the Sawyer Building in Las Vegas on Friday.
K.M. Cannon/Las Vegas Review-Journal, via AP pool

Gov. Steve Sisolak announced Friday afternoon that minimal contact sports would be allowed to resume competition Saturday at the youth and adult levels under directive 034.

However, Sisolak deferred any resumption of play at the high school level to the NIAA.

Minimal contact sports – baseball, softball, soccer, volleyball, flag football, golf, tennis, running, no-contact cheer, swimming and diving – are allowed to resume practices, games and competitions if proper social distancing requirements can be met.

“We are trusting and counting on parents, players and officials to make this program a success. Coaches are role models — wear a mask on the sidelines,” said Sisolak.

Tournaments can resume Oct. 24, but tournament officials must have a safety plan approved by the Nevada Department of Business and Industry.

Full contact sports – or high-risk sports – such as football, wrestling, basketball, lacrosse, hockey, water polo and group cheer are still prohibited under the governor’s directive.

All safety measures remain in place for sports competition and adult coaches, managers and referees are “required to take a COVID-19 test prior to the start of the season or resumption of any athletic activity.”

The reprieve on recreational sports comes three days after Sisolak loosened restrictions on public and private gatherings across the state.

In response to the governor’s directive, the NIAA posted a press release on its website saying it “will continue to engage in dialogue related to the return to play for our sanctioned sports.”

The press release also stated that the NIAA doesn’t intend on making any changes to its master schedule for this school year “without subsequent action of the NIAA’s Legislative Commission (the superintendents) and/or Board of Control voting members to amend start dates, the current schedule will remain in place.”