Boys Soccer Team Takes COVID Head on

BY JACKSON KERLEY

The boys soccer team has not been discouraged by the problems COVID-19 has caused to their season. Though they had nearly half of their offseason cancelled, when they were allowed to return, they came back working hard to make up for the lost time.

“I’m just glad we have a season,” said Justin Lane, a sophomore at Wadsworth High. “I thought we wouldn’t have one.” 

The offseason was affected in several ways, including all summer practices being moved out of the normal offseason, as well as cancelling fitness practices. There are very few changes to on-the-field action, however; most of the changes are off the field. For example, varsity teams usually would sit in the stands or on the field to watch the junior varsity team play, but this year, players must sit in the stand at least six feet away from teammates. And on the bench, players must have masks on and sit as far away from each other as they can. The team also must wear a mask if they are not playing no matter what.

Another major change to soccer this year is having to fill out a COVID-19 symptoms form before every practice or game. The Google Form asks players to answer questions on symptoms with yes or no, as well as provide their temperature. Players must fill this out, or they are not allowed to practice.

“The Google Form is by far the worst part”, said Lane. “I always forget about it.”

The biggest change is having to wear a mask in and out of the stadium for practices and games. Players also must wear masks on the bench when they are not playing.

“The worst change this year has been wearing masks on the sideline,” said the JV White team’s centerback Dan Bugajski, a Wadsworth junior. “And I’ve been injured this year, so I’ve spent a lot of time on the sidelines. ”

Jackson Herbet, 10, lines up for a penalty kick against Medina goalkeeper on September 12th. He scored, giving the Grizzlies a 1-0 lead, upsetting Medina, who was sixth ranked team in the state.

Three of the team games were cancelled due to school closing down sports. Akron City Schools was among the schools that made the decision to cancel fall sports, along with Kent, who reinstated fall sports before the beginning of the season, allowing teams Firestone and North to play each other. However, they did not reinstate fast enough and their games were replaced. 

 “I feel pretty good for this year.” said Bugaski. “Varsity’s doing good and so are we, so I’m looking forward to what the season holds.”

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