Coronavirus cases create tangled web of WPIAL football schedule changes | Trib HSSN

By: Paul Schofield Friday, September 4, 2020 | 3:53 PM Shane Dunlap | Tribune-Review Latrobe’s Tucker Knupp hits the sled during an Aug. 27 practice. A series of coronavirus-related schedule changes have Latrobe looking for a Sept. 25 game. Times are changing these days because of the coronavirus. That means […]

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Friday, September 4, 2020 | 3:53 PM


Times are changing these days because of the coronavirus. That means changing minute by minute.

Because of covid-19 issues, several schools have made adjustments to their football schedules.

Kiski Area paused football activities until Sept. 10 due to a coronavirus exposure issue. Elizabeth Forward pushed back the start of in-person instruction because of students testing positive. Both were forced to make football schedule changes.

Elizabeth Forward is now looking for a game in Week 1.

The Warriors were scheduled to meet Yough on Friday, Sept. 11, but wanted to push that date back to Monday, Sept. 14 to comply with the PIAA rule that requires teams have 15 practices before playing a game. That was the first date Elizabeth Forward could play.

Yough couldn’t accommodate that switch because it was scheduled to meet South Park on Friday, Sept. 18, and South Park couldn’t move that game to another day.

By PIAA rule, teams must have 120 hours of rest between games.

Unable to make the Elizabeth Forward matchup work, Yough instead scheduled a game with Chartiers-Houston for Week 1.

“We just couldn’t get things to work out,” Yough athletic director Scott Morrison said. “Luckily, Chartiers-Houston was free to play us.”

Elizabeth Forward has begun the search for a Week 1 opponent.

“We’re looking,” Elizabeth Forward athletic director Tim Guffey said. “I posted something on the WPIAL website and I’ve called a few schools. Hopefully something will open up. If we play a game, we have to play on a Monday. We could scrimmage on Saturday.”

Kiski Area moved its Sept. 18 game against Connellsville to the earliest date it could be played because of the 15-day rule, Sept. 21. The Cavaliers then canceled a Sept. 25 nonconference game against West Allegheny because of the 120-hour rule and replaced it with a Sept. 26 conference matchup with Penn Hills that was originally set for Sept. 11.

Connellsville, which was supposed to play Peters Township on Sept. 25, then filled the empty week on West Allegheny’s schedule with a Sept. 26 game.

Peters Township, which also had covid-related issues, moved its originally scheduled Sept. 11 game against South Fayette to Sept. 25.

“It’s been crazy,” Connellsville athletic director Rich Evans said. “Things worked out for us.”

Latrobe, which was supposed to play South Fayette in a nonconference game Sept. 25, is now looking for an opponent.

Athletic director Mark Mears said he has contacted Upper St. Clair and Albert Gallatin for possible games. Upper St. Clair was supposed to play Penn Hills.

He said he was too late to try to get Ligonier Valley on the schedule.

Ligonier Valley, which was off that week on its original schedule, was able to secure a game at Western Beaver.

WPIAL Executive Director Amy Scheuneman said the changes are required to achieve the main goal of this season, which is to get kids playing sports.

“We want them to play either conference or nonconference games,” Scheuneman said. “There has to be some flexibility when schools get cases. Schools have been forced to make adjustments in all sports.”

And that changes from day to day.

Paul Schofield is a Tribune-Review Staff Writer. You can contact Paul by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .

Tags: Albert Gallatin, Connellsville, Elizabeth Forward, Kiski Area, Latrobe, Penn Hills, Upper St. Clair, West Allegheny, Yough

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