Erie High School sports coaches adapting to new rules and regulations


Evan Kraus, grade 10, running a Cross Country race at Holy Family.

Brendan Murphy, Senior Staff Writer

Erie coaches have been challenged this year with the new 2020 fall sports season. The season has forced these coaches to be quick on their feet and adapt to the new expectations and restrictions.

Notable changes plaguing the fall seasons include COVID-19 state regulations: mask-wearing, social distancing, and limited people at a location.

Cross country head coach, Brandon Havard shared his thoughts regarding the team’s adaptation to the new mandatory guidelines, “I think they really kind of got it down. There have not been too many major issues, but it is definitely a challenge.”   

“Our situation is adapting to coaching and finding any and every way to kind of make sure to stay in the guidelines to help you guys [athletes] improve.” Wally Clay, cross country coach, explained.

Coaches have continued to work through the new rules rather than get hung up on them.  Across the board, coaches claim that this season is best to be about the athletes and the sport rather than just being about the new changes and challenges COVID created. 

Of the new rules, the most notable is the usage of masks. There is no consistent standard during competitions, however, masks are required when in close distance to others. For cross country,  participants do not need to compete with a mask unless they are right within the group of runners or passing other athletes whereas, in tennis, the requirement varies from school to school.

“In some schools, you had to wear masks during matches. Some schools did not care. There was not a lot of consistency necessarily.”  Tennis head coach, Eric Farran continued, “So if you are playing a team that was not wearing masks, I think they had a bit of an advantage.”

There is a level of inconsistency coaches have had to deal with this season. A major portion of coaching is to help their teams to overcome the changes this year.

While it has been a hard season for all of our Erie teams and coaches, throughout each and every sport, athletes were glad to be running, striking, swinging, and throwing. The only sports that had been allowed to play in the Fall season were cross country, boys tennis, boys golf, softball, and now football. There may be more changes coming later in the year but Erie High School coaches will be ready to handle them.