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Gresham, Barlow High have had 9 contests affected by COVID; more could be on horizon with omicron

PMG PHOTO: CHRISTOPHER KEIZUR - Gresham boys basketball couldnt practice at the start of the year due to health and safety protocols, which Coach Erik Lyslo said affected the play on the court.It has been a tumultuous start to the winter sport season as a newer, more contagious strain of COVID makes its way across the globe.

The teams in the Mt. Hood Conference, as well as Estacada High School, all have faced cancelations and rescheduled games due to health and safety protocols.

The local teams have been the ones to trigger 12 cancellations due to COVID so far this season at all levels of play — varsity, junior varsity and freshman. Other schools have also had to cancel sporting events to do outbreaks. Only some of those games were able to be rescheduled.

The Barlow High School girls basketball junior varsity and junior varsity 2 teams both had 10-day quarantines for the unvaccinated players at the beginning of the winter season. The two teams canceled a combined four games because of the lack of players.

The Bruins have had no other team-wide COVID issues, but a few individual student athletes have been out with individual exposures.

The Gresham boys basketball teams — varsity, junior varsity, and freshman — similarly all had health and safety protocol issues at the beginning of the season that led to a mandatory two-week shutdown. Varsity and JV rescheduled a season-opener game to a few days before Christmas, while the freshman team had it canceled.

The shutdown also affected the teams because they were unable to practice during that time and develop chemistry on the court.

"We (were) behind everyone else coming into tonight," said Coach Erik Lyslo after a 61-50 loss to Cleveland High School earlier this month.

Gresham girls basketball had to reschedule a night of games, for varsity, JV and JV2, due to health and safety protocols. Three other JV games, two of which were part of the Gladstone Tournament, and another JV2 game all were canceled.

Gophers wrestling had a tournament canceled due to issues at the host school that school officials hope will be rescheduled.

Sandy High School has had a few student athletes and coaches quarantine, but no practices or games have been canceled on the Pioneers end. Likewise the Centennial School District has had minimal COVID-related stoppages this season, with only one wrestling match postponed in December by another school.

In Estacada both COVID and the snowy weather have shuttered games. Three sporting events have been canceled so far this winter season, including two the day of the contest because the other teams had an outbreak.

Around Christmas weekend, with snowfall that made driving in the Estacada-area difficult, the girls basketball team couldn't make it to a tournament. The Reynolds School District also had to reschedule a tournament during the poor weather.

"The weather has been kind of crazy but I think we're through the worst of it finally," said Andy Mott, Estacada athletic director.

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