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Pfeiffer athletics posts guidelines for fall semester

Pfeiffer University recently completed COVID-19 guidelines for the return of students to school in the upcoming fall semester, which includes student-athletes.

Cloth face masks will be required inside every building or when student-athletes are not engaged in physical activity. Masks can only be taken off at practice.

As per CDC guidelines, students will be asked to avoid touching their face, eyes and nose while using a tissue to sneeze and washing hands, along with wearing appropriate clothing and shoes at all times.

Athletes will participate in daily screenings including in the weight room and athletic training room. Anyone with a temperature of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or anyone with COVID-19 symptoms will not be allowed to participate and will be sent to the school’s health center.

A return to play form must be filled out for student-athletes as well, along with a note from a healthcare provider clearing them to play.

Anyone having received a positive test will not be allowed to return until not having a fever for 72 hours and 10 days have passed since symptoms appeared.

Student-athletes having had close contact with someone who tested positive will be quarantined for 14 days after last exposure and be tested.

In the athletic training room, capacity will be limited to 10 people and only those with athletic training needs will be allowed in, including coaches, administrators and staff members in the initial phase. Three phases will slowly open up the trainng room.

For practices and game days, temperatures of student-athletes and coaches will be taken and hand sanitizer will be available. All equipment will be wiped down and three feet between coaches and student-athletes should be maintained at a minimum.

Practices should be in pods of no more than 10 athletes outside and five inside. For soccer, no tackling, heading the ball or goalies spitting on their hands will be allowed.

Sports defined as high risk at Pfeiffer are men’s lacrosse, competitive cheerleading, dance and soccer. Medium risk include basketball, women’s lacrosse, volleyball, baseball, softball, tennis, relay swimming and some track events. Low risk are golf, swimming, running and cross-country.

Visiting teams will be responsible for cleaning their own benches after games.

As far as those attending events, Pfeiffer identified three tiers of individuals which will be allowed. Only Tier 1 (Essential: athletes, coaches, officials, event staff, medical staff and security) and Tier 2 (Preferred: media) will be allowed until state and local health departments lift restrictions on mass gatherings. Tier 3, or non-essential people, are spectators and vendors.

For away games versus non-conference opponents, Pfeiffer will contact schools about their COVID-19 status. Temperatures will be taken of student-athletes, coaches and the driver. Buses will be sanitized should teams take a rest break.

Pfeiffer will also follow the USA South’s procedures for away conference games.

About Charles Curcio

Charles Curcio was the sports editor of the Stanly News & Press from 1999-2001 and has currently served in the same capacity since 2008. He was awarded the NCHSAA Tim Stevens Media Representative of the Year and named CNHI Sports Editor of the Year in 2014. He has also been honored twice by the North Carolina Press Association.

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