Start of fall sports delayed in Maine high schools
PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The Maine Principals’ Association is delaying the start of fall sports in hopes of salvaging a shortened season for high schools.
The start of fall practice has been delayed from Aug. 17 to Sept. 8, which is the day after Labor Day. The preseason will last only two weeks, with the first games no earlier than Sept. 18.
“We hope to be able to offer a full fall season,” MPA Executive Director Mike Burnham told the Portland Press Herald.
The MPA canceled the spring sports season last April and is limiting interscholastic activities through the summer.
Its Interscholastic Management Committee voted Tuesday to delay the start of the fall season. Exactly how many schools will be able to participate remains to be seen.
Other coronavirus developments in Maine:
Another 28 people tested positive for the coronavirus but there were no new deaths, the Maine Center for Disease Control reported Wednesday.
The total of coronavirus cases held steady, with more than 3,700, after the Maine CDC removed a number of false positives from a summer camp using less-reliable test. The number of deaths held steady at 118.
For most people, the virus causes mild or moderate symptoms. For some, especially older adults and the infirm, it can cause more severe illness and can lead to death.
The director of the Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention said the state will do more to promote flu vaccines this year to try to take the strain off the health care system during the coronavirus pandemic.
Maine promotes flu shots every year, but they’re especially important this year because of all the resources being used to combat the pandemic, Maine CDC director Nirav Shah said Tuesday. Residents typical start getting flu shots in early fall, and Shah said “it’s likely COVID-19 will still be with us” at that time.
Maine had more than 10,000 cases of influenza during the most recent flu season, which stretched from 2019 into this year. The flu vaccine is important for both adults and children, Shah said.
The coronavirus pandemic reached Maine in March. State officials have reported more than 3,700 cases of the virus in Maine since then.