Fulton County’s late start to the basketball season will be even later for one of its participants, the Johnstown High School boys’ team, which on Thursday called off what was supposed to be its opener at home against Mayfield.
Johnstown had six available players Thursday and was missing seven more due to a COVID-19 issue, and opted not to play for safety reasons.
Fulton County approved guidelines for teams to practice and compete in “high” risk sports including basketball on Feb. 19 when its seven-day coronavirus positive rate average was 4.6%, which is where it stood Friday.
A majority of counties within the greater Capital Region set a benchmark that their respective seven-day coronavirus positivity rate average needed to reach 4% or lower to allow for “high” risk winter sports to commence.
Montgomery County previously gave “high” risk sports the go-ahead while its seven-day coronavirus positive rate average was above that 4% benchmark. That positive rate average dipped to 3.9% Friday. Both Montgomery and Fulton county schools were given to OK to compete beyond their county borders should their positive rate average reach 4% or below.
Johnstown acting athletic director Mike Satterlee said the basketball team’s seven players were quarantined through Sunday after a student not associated with the team tested coronavirus positive, and they were unable to fulfill the six-practice requirement before Thursday’s scheduled game.
“We thought it was wiser not to play [with six players],” Satterlee said. “Not right now. The guys are just coming back and a lot of them haven’t done anything in some time. We didn’t want to get anyone hurt.”
Satterlee said he is hoping the game with Mayfield can be rescheduled in the shortened winter season that runs through March 13.
“Mayfield was good about it,” Satterlee said. “We talked about it and determined it was the best thing to do.”
Satterlee said the Johnstown boys will be a full strength Monday for a game at Gloversville, while the Johnstown girls will host Gloversville. Both of Johnstown’s basketball teams have a bye Saturday in Fulton County’s five-school basketball schedule
The Johnstown girls began their season with a win at Mayfield Thursday.