Berkshire County's Tentative Winter Sports Season Takes Shape
The contestants will be masked, the bleachers will be empty and some of the competitions will be virtual.
But for dozens of high school student-athletes throughout the county, sports are back.
On Tuesday night, the Berkshire County athletic directors released a tentative schedule for the first full week of games and meets for schools that are fielding competitive teams this winter.
The season actually got underway last Saturday with a Nordic ski race between Mount Greylock and Wahconah, but nearly a dozen more teams are scheduled to get into the act starting this Saturday morning.
The ADs cautioned that all competition dates and times are contingent on final approval from the teams' respective school administrations. And, of course, all schedules are subject to change based on the current conditions of the COVID-19 pandemic in the schools' communities.
"Teams have been hard at work safely practicing, training and preparing for competition," the ADs said in a statement released by Wahconah Athletic Director Jared Shannon. "Our primary focus is to provide student-athletes safe opportunities to participate in high school athletics and represent their school community."
On Saturday morning, the cross country skiers from Hoosac Valley join the fun for a three-team meet at Mount Greylock.
On Monday, the basketball season opens when the Mount Greylock girls visit Wahconah, and Alpine skiing returns when Monument Mountain and Wahconah compete at Bousquet.
Boys basketball is back on Tuesday, when Wahconah visits Mount Greylock. And the boys and girls from Hoosac Valley, Mount Everett and Monument Mountain round out the schedule of five schools as the season progresses.
Wahconah's swimmers hit the water on Wednesday for a virtual meet against New Lebanon, N.Y. The New York schools that compete in the Berkshire County League began their competitive schedule last week.
"It is also important to note that spectators will not be allowed at Berkshire County high school events during the winter season," the ADs wrote.