NEEDLES — The Nevada Interscholastic Activities Association is adjusting the sports season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Through a prepared statement, the NIAA said the COVID- 19 pandemic and the resultant challenges faced by the NIAA member schools, the NIAA has made the following adjustments to sports seasons for the 2020-21 school year.

For the winter season (boys and girls basketball and wrestling), there will be six competitive weeks, practice begins Jan. 2; the first contest may be held Jan. 15; Last contest is held Feb. 20.

“Something is better than nothing so I’m glad that we are able to play,” Needles High School Lady ’Stangs varsity basketball coach Adrian Chavez said. “Hopefully that by the time the season comes, this COVID pandemic will be a lot more in control to have a chance to play for a state championship. My heart really goes out to the seniors this year, kinda getting that taken away from them and not having the opportunity to play for a state championship. As soon as the school district, state, or the powers that be give me the green light, we are ready to get to work.”

“It’s going to be different because it’s only going to be a six week season,” NHS Mustangs boys varsity coach J.R. Rodriguez said.

For fall sports season — football, volleyball and cross country — there will be six competitive weeks; football practice begins Feb. 13 with other fall sports starting practice Feb. 20. The first contest may be held, March 5; last contest is April 10.

“Unfortunately, that is not the news we wanted to hear from the NIAA that football would not be happening this fall,” NHS coach Matt Fromelt said. “However, it is good news that the student-athletes will still be given an opportunity to play all sports in the spring semester. It is a very difficult and tough decision to make for the NIAA, but I truly feel they made the right decision in regards to student-athlete safety and health. We will stay positive and make the most of the situation on Feb. 13 when our season opens up.”

For the spring sports season — baseball, softball and track — there will be six competitive weeks, practice begins April 3; first contest may be held April 16; last contest is May 22.

“Right now, with all the uncertainties, we are just trying to stay positive,” NHS Lady ’Stangs softball coach Alex Chandler said. “We’re really looking forward to working with this upcoming group of girls.”

Further changes were added to the upcoming sports season Out of season regulations traditionally in place during the summer will be in place through Jan. 1.

These are the scheduled dates for when the NIAA sanctioned sports are offered. Participation in NIAA sanctioned sports is at the option of member schools and their districts. Playoff considerations are at the discretion of individual classifications, regions and leagues.

The six competitive weeks would include any playoffs. At this time, it is anticipated that there will not be any state tournaments.

The holding of practices and competitions are subject to a government directive, orders from state and local health departments, the restrictions associated with the phase of reopening in place at the time and local district and school mandates.

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