The Perryville boys basketball team was finally able to get back on the court on Monday. The Pirates went into quarantine for two weeks following a positive COVID-19 test after their game at Kennett on Dec. 22.
“It was believed that a player was carrying the virus on the bus ride,” Perryville coach Rick Dunn said. “Due to the length of the bus ride and being in the locker room and on the bench. All the players were considered close contacts by the health department and we were recommended to shut it down.”
The quarantine period coincided with the Pirates chance to play in the 65th annual Bob Sechrest Jr. Christmas Tournament in Park Hills, a tournament, which the Pirates were forced to pull out of shortly after.
Dunn said it was a disappointment to say the least.
“We were looking forward to playing in that tournament.” Dunn said. “We were trying to build on some momentum we had going after playing some good team close. That tournament would have gave us some opportunities to get a win or two and just play games because that what we really need right now.”
Dunn said that he tried to set a good example with honoring the quarantine rules and watched a lot of video of team’s coming up on the schedule.
“However, for the most part it was boring in the Dunn household,” he said.
Several players were able to at least touch a basketball during the quarantine period, so the absence from the court may not be as noticeable on the first day, but Dunn said he tried to keep the first practice as competitive as possible.
“I was a great first day back,” Dunn said. “Putting up shots in the driveway is different than being in the gym going up and down the court. You could see the rust getting knocked off and it was exciting to get back in the swing of things.”
Perryville was originally scheduled to play on Tuesday at Windsor in a conference match-up, but the Owls are currently in quarantine so that game had to be rescheduled for a later date. Perryville will have to wait until Friday when they travel to De Soto to play in their first game in more than two weeks.
“It could be a blessing in disguise,” Dunn said. “It gives us a few extra days to get reconditioned and ready to roll.”
De Soto was a possible second round matchup for Perryville in the Christmas Tournament. The Dragons were seeded seventh in the tournament and fell to Perryville’s first opponent in second seed North County, before finishing sixth.
Dunn doesn’t necessarily know what to expect when his team finally takes the court.
“With high school kids you never know,” Dunn said. “We might come out and be rusty or we might come out and shoot the lights out.”
Whatever the outcome is just happy to be on the court playing and coaching.
“It should be a fun time on Friday and if we keep having as good practices leading up to the game, I have no problems seeing us get our first win of the season,” Dunn said.