The local sports landscape will look different for the foreseeable future.
According to a press release by the St. Louis Archdiocese sent out Sunday night, St. Vincent schools closed on Wednesday and will resume on April 6 at the earliest.
The school closure also affects the spring sport teams as they will not be able to practice, or play games until April.
“For us it’s a little bit different because we have two bosses the Archdiocese and MSHSAA,” St. Vincent Athletic Director Bruce Valleroy said. “The Archdiocese overrules the state in this, so that is what we have to go with.”
Along with the practices and games, St. Vincent will not be able to hold other extracurricular activities including fall and winter sports, as well as any possible USAV tournaments that were to be held in the school gymnasium.
The teams practiced on both Monday and Tuesday, but after 6 p.m. the gym was closed.
“We had basketball and volleyball open gyms scheduled for the next week or so and we can’t do those anymore,” Valleroy said. “There’s no weightlifting for football or anything like that.”
Despite St. Vincent’s restrictions, other schools on the Indians schedules are not, but they still can’t compete. Valleroy has also been getting calls from other schools in a similar situation.
“I’ve had some schools call me already like Crystal City and Fredericktown who canceled school as well,” Valleroy said. “In that case we have just canceled the game.”
Perryville will be taking a similar approach to their spring sports as well.
All Pirate athletics will be suspended through April 5. This includes no practices off campus as a team and all facilities such as gyms will be closed during that time. The scheduled games through this period will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis to possibly be rescheduled.
“At the end of the day we just want our kids to be able to play,” Perryville Athletic Director Justin Dreyer said. “Whether that be baseball, soccer, track, or golf, we want them to be able to get out on the field.”
Dreyer hopes teams can return to the field on April 6, but the decision was made for safety of the students.
“Many of our conference schools had postponed and they are all doing the same thing,” Dreyer said. “We wanted to do it for the safety of the kids and the community.”
Saxony Lutheran will do the same as they will suspend all sports through April 3. The decision comes after the school’s policy to suspend all face-to-face learning.
“That goes off the MSHSAA guidelines that once you suspend school that also applies to sports,” Ruark said.
The school will suspends all games, practices and other extracurricular activities through April 3.
According to Johns Hopkins University, the number of cases reported across the nation topped 3,700 confirmed cases in the United States on Monday, although many experts agree the number could be much higher.
“We will be evaluating the situation every day to make sure it is safe for the kids to return to the classroom,” Ruark said.