High school playoffs rescheduled for next week

Downed trees lay across Laurelton Drive in Mastic

Downed trees lay across Laurelton Drive in Mastic Beach after superstorm Sandy caused much flooding and damage across much of Long Island. (Oct. 30, 2012) (Credit: Newsday / Thomas A. Ferrara)

High school playoffs in Nassau and Suffolk have been rescheduled to begin next week but weather and safety issues could lead to further postponements, officials say.

Football playoffs games will be played Friday and Saturday, conditions permitting. Other playoffs, including soccer, would begin Tuesday in Nassau and Wednesday in Suffolk. The Nassau field hockey playoffs resume on Thursday at 2 p.m. with the Class A semifinals.

"The safety of our athletes is paramount," Ed Cinelli, executive director of Suffolk sports, said. "Nothing is set in stone in any of these schedules. It's a very difficult process and everything is very tentative."

Suffolk posted its schedule of football games for next Friday and Saturday on its website (sectionxi.org), but Nassau has not determined sites and times. The details for the football playoffs are being worked out.

"We are only going to set up this upcoming weekend for the football schedule," Nassau executive director of athletics Nina Van Erk said. "We have time to figure out the rest of the football schedule and it is our hope that we can have that in place by Tuesday. But we have to get the other sports scheduled and finished by Nov. 13 and 14 so they can participate in the respective state tournaments.

"It is our hope that we will be playing football next weekend," Van Erk said. "Any subsequent schedules, including the Long Island championships, will be determined later."

Boys and girls soccer, field hockey and boys and girls volleyball playoff schedules are being finalized for next week and both counties also hope to stage their cross-country championship meet.

There is equal uncertainty in the Catholic leagues, where the brackets for the first round of CHSFL football games are set, but not the dates, times or sites. The NSCHSAA has not announced dates for the resumption of its playoffs in the other sports.

NSCHSAA president Don Buckley, also the athletic director at St. Anthony's, said an agreement was reached to push back state championships one week to the weekend of Nov. 17 for boys and girls soccer and girls volleyball.

"But even that is subject to many factors," Buckley said. "Right now, everything is on hold until at least Monday and after that, it's day to day."

With Gregg Sarra

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