WIAA approves spring sports tournament protocols at May Board of Control Meeting

From the WIAA

The Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Board of Control approved updates to the COVID-19 pandemic guidelines for the spring Tournament Series, details of the first-ever State Girls Wrestling Tournament and a fast-tracked conference realignment request at its May meeting today.

The Board supported an executive staff recommendation, in response to information revealed by a membership survey, to remove mask mandates for spectators from the COVID-19 guidelines for outdoor spring State Tournaments if appropriate social distancing can be attained. Masks are encouraged for everyone not participating if social distancing is difficult. Masks remain required for spectators for any competitions conducted indoors. In addition, the pandemic guidelines for quarantining after close contact with a confirmed case of the virus was reduced from 14 days to six days for the spring Tournament Series if symptom free. Furthermore, vaccinated student-athletes are not required to be quarantined for close contact if they are symptom free.

With approval from the Board, the end date of the inaugural girls wrestling season will culminate with the State Girls Individual Wrestling Tournament Saturday, Jan. 29, 2022. The tournament will be held for two years at the La Crosse Center and hosted by Holmen High School. Support and interest in the facility reflects the positive experiences and relationships developed during the Boys and Girls State Basketball Tournaments earlier this year. The facility served as the venue for Divisions 2, 4 and 5.

The Board approved a fast-tracked, non-football conference realignment request by Lac Courte Oreilles to move from an independent status to the Indianhead Conference, effective in all sports except football in the fall of 2021-22. The Board also formally approved the dates, format and sites for the spring season State Tournaments in June. In addition, the Board voted in unanimous support in opposition to legislation bill AB195/196 and SB 322/323 prohibiting transgender participation in youth sports.

Other topics of discussion included reports on consideration of a committee to readdress competitive equity, 2021 Area Meetings in the fall, and a review of pending legal matters.

The Board received liaison reports from John Ashley of the Wisconsin Association of School Boards and Nathan DeLany of the Wisconsin Athletic Directors Association.

The WIAA, as defined by its Constitution, is a voluntary, unincorporated, and nonprofit organization. The membership oversees interscholastic athletic programs for 515 senior high schools and 48 junior high/middle level schools in its membership.

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David Keech
Author: David Keech

David Keech is a math teacher in Wisconsin Rapids and public address announcer for Abbotsord High School. He officiates basketball, baseball, and softball in central Wisconsin. He has reported on amateur sports since 2011, known as 'KeechDaVoice.' David can be reached at [email protected]