After playing seven games during the COVID-shortened 2020 high school football season, the Washington Blue Lions (and every other team in Ohio) were hoping to play a full schedule of 10 games this season.
The word came Tuesday that the Blue Lions would not have a game this Friday, due to illness and players being quarantined.
Last week for the homecoming game the Blue Lions were scheduled to play Minford. But Minford had to cancel that game due to a high rate of illness at the school.
The Blue Lions were able to find an opponent for the homecoming game, Division I Westerville North. The visiting team won that game, 48-14.
On Tuesday, the Blue Lions had to cancel their scheduled game against Waverly.
For Waverly, (3-0 and ranked No. 8 in the state this week in Division IV), it will be its second missed game of the season as they did not play their regularly-scheduled game against Chillicothe on Sept. 10.
“As of (Tuesday) morning, we had a couple of football players that did test positive for Covid,” Washington High School Athletic Director Greg Phipps said. “Because of the occurrences and things that happen, not on the field, per se — we always try to keep our distance on the field — but, this weekend with the homecoming and festivities, then kids go and stay overnight at different places, the health department had to put a number of our boys under quarantine.”
“We were working on getting another team,” Phipps said. “We had two or three teams in the mix, but when we had so many put on quarantine, we had to stop pursuing those teams.
“We’ll be off this Friday and Saturday for the reserve game,” Phipps said. “The goal is that the young men who were put on quarantine will be back at school around next Tuesday, so they will have a few days to practice for the McClain game (scheduled at Greenfield on Sept. 24).
“We cancelled our game with Waverly (Monday),” Phipps said. “Waverly went to remote learning last Thursday (Sept. 9). They had 39 percent of their whole school out. We don’t have anything close to that. They closed their whole district. Our rule is if we’re going to be out of school, we’re going to stop sports. They were continuing with sports. We did not feel it was appropriate for us to have them come in. That’s why we canceled (Monday). That’s why (Monday) afternoon we were looking for teams.
“Then, this all hit with our own situation,” Phipps added. “Our thing is, kids first and their safety. We wouldn’t want to bring in another team this week. We cancelled football practice for (Tuesday). We’ll see how many are here (Wednesday) that are not in quarantine.”