Added responsibility for coaches as high-risk sports get green light

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ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — School districts in Albany County are giving their final approval to begin high-risk sports. With a lot riding on a successful season, coaches say their role in a successful season is even greater this year.

“Just for these five weeks we need to quarantine our lives and go to school, if you are going to school. If you’re not, stay virtual,” said South Colonie Basketball Coach Ken Dagostino.

Basketball players in the Suburban Council are given five weeks to play a season that normally goes from November to March.

“They need, and all of us need, just to stay as best basketball-isolated as you can for five weeks. Just for the dedication not only to yourself, but to your teammate,” Dagostino said.

Positivity rate in the county is something school districts and county health departments will keep an eye on. If the positivity rate goes above four percent, students will not be able to practice.

“We know, that as coaches, that we have to go above and beyond,” said Albany Basketball Coach Decky Lawson.

Coaches will be adding another responsibility this season. They will have to make sure mask wearing is enforced, everything is sanitized and students are comfortable playing.

“We have to all be on the same page to make sure that our kids are feeling comfortable with this because all of them are not feeling that comfortable,” Lawson said.

Some schools will begin to play as early as this week. Win or lose, for Dagostino, playing again is also about getting the kids back on the court.

“Whether it’s one minute a game or it’s 32 minutes a game that they play, I think it’s important that they put that uniform on again,” Dagostino said.

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