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HS Sports: District 3 to survey member schools about starting fall sports
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HS Sports

HS Sports: District 3 to survey member schools about starting fall sports

Mechanicsburg MC 15.JPG (copy)

Mechanicsburg girls soccer huddles after losing the 2019 District 3 Class 3A championship. District 3 will survey member schools about starting fall sports.

District 3 intends to ask its member schools about their preference for starting fall sports.

That’s according to Cedar Cliff athletic director John Kosydar on Thursday. Big Spring AD Joe Sinkovich confirmed the news Thursday night.

The PIAA approved a series of measures during Wednesday’s board of directors meeting. Among them, the PIAA is allowing schools around the state to elect to start their fall sports seasons as late as Oct. 5 under two different plans.

Kosydar said via text the survey is likely to be sent out in the “the next day or two” and is “surveying its membership for their thoughts on starting fall sports.”

“I have ongoing conversations with Red Land AD [Daniel Hagerman] since we are in same district,” Kosydar said.

“Kind of looking at the options for the fall season a little bit and just trying to see what everyone’s thoughts are, how everyone feels,” Sinkovich said.

All Cumberland County schools compete in the Mid-Penn Conference, which is one of several leagues within District 3. The Mid-Penn consists of more than 30 schools in most sports and recently added members of the old Tri-Valley League for football only beginning this year.

Under the PIAA’s alternate schedule plan, schools could choose to start their fall sports seasons Sept. 14 for football and Sept. 18 for all other sports. In the hybrid format, schools could start their regular seasons no later than Oct. 5 if approved by the school’s district committee — in this case that would be District 3.

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If a school does not delay the start, golf’s regular season begins Aug. 20, girls tennis begins Aug. 24, football kicks off Aug. 28 and soccer, field hockey, girls volleyball and cross country start up Sept. 4.

It took barely 24 hours for the dominoes to begin falling in other corners of the state. Thursday afternoon, Norristown Area School District announced it would ask its school board to vote to cancel fall sports competition this year, with the option to revisit the matter if the PIAA pushes fall sports to a later date. PIAA executive director Dr. Robert Lombardi has repeatedly said moving fall sports to the spring is not tenable.

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Then Thursday night, TribLive reported the WPIAL board of directors voted unanimously Thursday to adopt the PIAA’s hybrid model. The intent is for the WPIAL to “establish a new, later date for each sport.” TribLive said the WPIAL will release its updated plan by noon Friday.

Also Thursday night, The Morning Call reported the Eastern Pennsylvania Conference, consisting of 18 schools in District 11, voted that day to delay fall sports. The EPC will decide Tuesday when the seasons will start.

The guidelines for delaying fall sports on a school-by-school basis do not say a school has to delay all sports. It appears to allow schools to delay one sport, some sports or all sports if they so choose. Kosydar said that was his understanding as well.

Kosydar did not have a date for when the decision would be made by District 3, and it’s too soon to say what schools or District 3 would ultimately choose to do. Sinkovich wasn’t sure how District 3 ADs would vote, but he feels it might be best for the district to decide together rather than let schools decide individually and then try to fit schedules together.

“I think it’s difficult for everyone to make their own decision, because in the end if everyone’s not on the same page, how is that going to look in the fall,” Sinkovich said.

The PIAA is opting to allow schools, and its 12 districts, to decide for themselves if they wish to start the season later. The state’s governing body did not choose to make the decision for its membership, despite multiple college conferences in the state canceling fall sports or moving them to the spring and multiple neighboring state high school associations delaying fall sports several weeks already.

Email Jake Adams at or follow him on Twitter


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