The two-week bans on high school sports practices on Long Island to prevent the spread of the coronavirus also includes restrictions on what is commonly referred to as “captains' practices,” county sports officials said Monday.
"Captains' practices" generally take place in the offseason, have no coach present and are instead run by the team’s seniors. While attendance at these practices is supposed to be optional, there has always been a certain amount of inherent pressure for team members to take part.
In Nassau, “there are no practices allowed right now, and that's with or without coaches,” said Pat Pizzarelli, executive director of Section VIII, the governing body of the county’s school sports. “We just don’t want to bring a group of kids together while schools are closed.”
In Suffolk, captains' practices “should be dissuaded as it doesn’t follow the spatial orientation and personal hygiene restrictions,” said Tom Combs, executive director of Section XI, the governing body of the county’s school sports.
President Donald Trump said Monday new guidelines include avoiding gathering in groups of more than 10 people for the next 15 days. Long Island schools are closed for the next two weeks, and school sports officials say they will reevaluate the future of the spring season then.