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Soccer reclassified as a high risk contact sport ahead of VHSL vote next week

Soccer reclassified as a high risk contact sport ahead of VHSL vote next week

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The NCAA has updated its Resocialization of Collegiate Sport: Developing Standards for Practice and Competition manual and has re-classified soccer as a high contact risk sport. This now places soccer in the same classification with basketball, field hockey, football, lacrosse, volleyball and wrestling, the VHSL said in a release Tuesday.

This third publication on resocialization of collegiate sport updates the prior two documents and provides new guidance specific to the prevention of community spread of COVID-19 in the athletics setting.

The reclassification comes ahead of a vote scheduled for Monday by the VHSL Executive Board to decide on sports changes for the upcoming school year. One option, Model 2, proposes switching the fall and spring sports seasons, with low- and moderate-contact risk sports allowed to play in the fall. Soccer would no longer be allowed to play this fall under the new classification.

“This update changes the concept of Model 2 drastically,” VHSL Executive Director Dr. John W. “Billy” Haun said in a release.

“One of the pros for Model 2 was the fact that it offered the opportunity to get more student-athletes back on the field this fall. Now, both soccer and lacrosse would not be played due to being classified as high contact risk sports which would eliminate approximately 28,000 student-athletes. This Model would leave spring athletes very vulnerable and lacrosse and soccer with the loss of two seasons.

“Our only objective is to provide as many opportunities to get our student-athletes on the field and courts.

“We will continue to review the classifications for these sports with our Sports Medicine Advisory Committee (SMAC) of leading health experts and with our Executive Committee to provide a healthy and safe environment for those participating in athletics.”

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