Schalmont's homecoming football game scheduled for Friday night against Hudson was postponed after cases of Coxsackievirus were confirmed at the high school and middle school.
Matt Ronca, Schalmont's athletic director, said three football players had contracted the virus. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, Coxsackievirus causes “mild, flu-like symptoms” that will subside in a matter of days without treatment.
"The main thing is to be safe and to be sure. We've canceled the game as a precaution and we're looking to reschedule," Ronca said. "Everything else is as it is."
Schalmont officials disinfected buildings and equipment after the cases were confirmed. Cases were confirmed at two other schools last month and also impacted football games.
“As soon as we were made aware of these cases, we sanitized and disinfected any shared areas and equipment that may transmit the virus,” Schalmont principal Imran Abbasi said on the school's website. “Student safety is our biggest concern, and we’ll continue to monitor for cases and remind our students of what they can do to stop this and other viruses from spreading.”
No make-up date has been made for the football game between Schalmont and Hudson. Schalmont's final regular season game, at home against Cobleskill-Richmondville, is slated to be played a week from Friday. All three teams are members of the Section II Class B Reinfurt Division and are chasing postseason berths.
"We are in the process of figuring out when we can make it up," Ronca said of the Schalmont-Hudson contest. "We hope to have a better idea tomorrow [Friday]. It's close to the end of the season and sectionals are coming up. Hopefully, it's sooner than later."
"Obviously, the kids are disappointed because they wanted to play, and I'm sure Hudson feels the same way, but they also understand the situation," Schalmont football coach Joe Whipple said. "It's just unfortunate."
Earlier this school year, football games were postponed involving Gloversville and Amsterdam after cases of Coxsackievirus were confirmed at those schools. The postponed Sept. 7 Gloversville at Ballston Spa game was played Sept. 10. The postponed Sept. 21 Amsterdam at Broadalbin-Perth game has yet to be made up.
According to school officials, Schalmont called off its scheduled pep rally Thursday as a precaution. Among the homecoming events to be held at Schalmont Friday are boys' and girls' soccer games against Rotterdam rival Mohonasen, and a powderpuff football game.