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Roaring Fork Rams prep for Season C

Locations: News Published
Photo by Sue Rollyson. Photos by Sue Rollyson.

Roaring Fork High School (RFHS) began practices this week for the Season C sports of football, girls volleyball, and boys soccer.
The 2020-2021 high school sports calendar was modified by the Colorado High School Activities Association (CHSAA) in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, splitting the school year into four seasons: A, B, C and D.
Safety implementations are mandated for each sport by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and the Governor’s COVID-19 Response Team.
RFHS Athletic Director Dominic Yoder says every effort has been made, from CHSAA on down to the school level, to ensure that student-athletes have the opportunity to play their preferred sports.
Seasons could overlap, should a team move on to postseason play. Yoder says they have some leeway with adjustments to roster submissions, explaining, “Our coaching staff and our administration have been very flexible about understanding that we want our teams going deep in the postseason, and if it creates an [season] overlap conflict [for a player], then we’re just going to deal with it on the next sport.”
The variance directive for Season C sports was approved by the CDPHE last week, with it “going down to the wire” for the start of the season, Yoder says.
“I’m super impressed with the diligence and the detail which the state has taken as it relates to the pandemic.” Yoder adds, “I know we’re not making everybody happy by the restrictions or by the decisions, but it has been tremendous to see the safety net that we have in place because of the decisions.”
A priority, Yoder explains, has been the health and safety of players, their families and the community. When asked about the mandates from CDPHE and CHSAA, Yoder says, “I think it’s just like anything else when it comes to public health, you’ve got to make decisions for the greater good.”
Yoder has been involved in conversations with local public health officials and says the Roaring Fork School District “has to pull that information and make decisions that are best for our schools.” He says it has been a great learning experience, and that he’s grateful for the collaboration between entities.
Each sport has specific modifications for practices and games. Volleyball will be played wearing facemasks. Soccer and football players will be unmasked while on the field of play, but players and coaches on the sidelines will be wearing face coverings.
Travel on team buses includes open windows to provide adequate airflow and assigned seating to ensure social distancing with facemasks. Additional restrictions include the length of time spent on the bus. Yoder says, “We’re following all the recommendations from the state to ensure safe travel for our student-athletes.”
Those requirements have resulted in the need for additional buses to transport teams. As Yoder explains, “It affects the bottom line, cost-wise. We’re taking two buses to do the same trip.”
Yoder, in his first year as RFHS athletic director, says the COVID pandemic has presented challenges. The upside, he says, is “being around the coaches and working with the student-athletes and trying to build a vision of what Roaring Fork athletics is going to be in the next few years. I think that it’s been tons of fun.”

Tags: #football #Rams #RFHS #Roaring Fork High School #soccer #sports #volleyball
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