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CHSFL plans to play, awaiting clearance from NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio

St. Anthony's head coach Joe Minucci talks to

St. Anthony's head coach Joe Minucci talks to his players during The Battle of the Bridge against The Delbarton School at MetLife Stadium on Sept. 14, 2019. Credit: George McNish

There will be high school football in the CHSFL. It may look different than in past years as the 14 league members from the five boroughs have still not been given clearance to participate by New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio.

"We have been delaying our start and advocating for those teams in the city so we can move forward," said Chris Hardardt, the director of athletics at Holy Trinity High School, who serves as the CHSFL president. "We’re somewhat in a holding pattern but time is running out. We want to be all inclusive but need a decision on the city teams soon."

The other eight members of the 22-team league have contingency plans in place to begin the season should sports remain postponed/canceled in New York City.

According to Joe Minucci, the director of athletics at St. Anthony’s High School, the eight teams from Long Island and Westchester have been divided into two divisions of four. St. Anthony’s, Chaminade, Stepinac and Iona Prep will compete in one division and St. John the Baptist, Holy Trinity, Kennedy Catholic and Kellenberg will play in the second division.

"The eight schools from Westchester and Long Island have plans to move forward and give our athletes a season," Hardardt said. "Mayor DeBlasio had announced a mid-April start date for the city teams but no definitive date. They haven’t even been able to hold practices yet."

There is no official schedule released by the CHSFL but teams have been practicing waiting on the word from the 14 city teams.

Yet, some schools have scheduled one non-league game.

In a non-league game scheduled this week, Iona Prep will meet Kellenberg at the Mitchel Athletic Complex Saturday at 6 p.m.

"We have a schedule in place if the city schools cannot play or are delayed too long," Hardardt said. "And if they can play, we have two choices. We’ll either merge them into our schedules with necessary adjustments or we’ll run two independent schedules of each other. There is no clarity at this point."

St. Dominic, which left the CHSFL two years ago, has petitioned to come back into the league in the fall of 2021. The Bayhawks are considered an independent team this spring and are scheduled to play at Kennedy Catholic in a non-league contest, March 12.

The CHSFL played a flag football schedule of games last fall.

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