GRAFTON—Due to a positive COVID-19 case among a school-aged individual in the county, Grafton High School has suspended voluntary conditioning for a week due to concerns that some of the athletes may have come in contact with that person and/or their family member(s).
Although no athlete currently conditioning at GHS has tested positive, the choice to take a week off was made in the best interest of the players, coaches, and their families.
“The decision was made between Lori (Shumaker) and myself to shut down the athletic programs for a week,” said Grafton athletic director and head football coach Rich Bord. “It was only recommended to us, but we weren’t going to take any chances. We’re not going to jeopardize the safety of the players.”
For the football team, Monday would have been the first day in Phase II of the three-phase format which was recommended by the WVSSAC in May. Other GHS sports, such as soccer and cross country, had also began summer conditioning under the SSAC’s recent guidelines.
Each one of the phases has very specific requirements in regard to safety precautions while holding the voluntary work outs and conditioning dates were also proposed to each county. Phase I would cover the first two weeks of the strength and conditioning training and was recommended to last from June 8th - 19th. Phase II would cover the following two weeks of strength and conditioning training and was recommended to last from June 22nd - July 3rd. Phase III would then be the traditional three-week summer “live” period, the dates of which would be decided on a county-by-county basis.
Now, under the directive of the Grafton-Taylor County Health Department and the County Medical
Officer, multiple organizations, including Taylor County Middle School and the Taylor County Little League, have decided to postpone workouts, practices, and even games for one week as a precautionary measure. AD Bord and Principal Shumaker, who have been working diligently in their roles to keep everyone as safe as possible, stated that they would be taking at least a week off as a safeguard but the ultimate goal is still being able to have a successful fall sports season.
“Unless something else happens, we’ll be up and running again,” stated Bord.
Shumaker also said she is looking ahead at what could be if everything goes smoothly from here on out.
“Our job is to keep people safe. We want to get to August with healthy kids to be able to play,” she added.