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Suffolk County postpones high school games, scrimmages until April 3

A lacrosse helmet, stick and ball on the

A lacrosse helmet, stick and ball on the turf at a girls lacrosse game in 2019. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

All scrimmages and games in Suffolk high school spring sports have been suspended until April 3 because of concerns over the coronavirus pandemic, officials said Friday.

Schools are permitted to practice, according to Tom Combs, executive director of Section XI, the governing body of Suffolk school sports.

Practices for spring sports such as baseball, softball and lacrosse began Monday throughout the state. Practices for badminton, golf, tennis and track and field are scheduled to begin this coming Monday.

Patchogue-Medford High School announced Thursday that it was postponing spring sports until April 30. Smithtown closed schools next week and canceled spring practices for that week. Roosevelt High School has postponed sports until April 20. Longwood High School has postponed all sports until May 1. Lindenhurst High School has suspended all sports until further notice.

“We were on the track, almost finished with practice, and our athletic director came over to share the news,” said Joe Vito, who has coached track at Roosevelt for 20 years. “Our guys were very disappointed, they were distraught. We’re back and building something special here in Roosevelt with a very young core of runners. And it’s something they take so much pride in. I have to make everyone understand the seriousness of the situation and give them a plan moving forward of what to do.”

Nassau has called a meeting for Monday morning to discuss how to proceed with spring sports, according to Pat Pizzarelli, executive director of Section VIII, the governing body of school sports in the county. Games are scheduled to begin as early as March 21.

Suffolk’s decision comes a day after state officials indefinitely postponed the remaining Long Island championship and state tournament basketball games as well as the state tournaments in bowling and ice hockey.

 With Gregg Sarra

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