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J. Thomas McNamara

      LSA’s Rhonda Glidewell wrote, “It’s an easy thing to do to prevent you from getting sick.  However, it’s a personal choice.
       “Not really (she was responding to my question if the masking guidelines would affect what she wanted to achieve in practice).
       “I don’t like to wear them, just like everyone else, but I will comply. It’s not the most comfortable thing to wear all day.
         “No, but we might have to take more breaks, concluded the Lions volleyball coach.
        The Decatur Tribune wrote all Decatur and Macon County volleyball coaches for their thoughts on the masks and Glidewell was the only one who responded by the time this is written and posted.
         Practices start Monday, Aug. 9.
         Brad Dalton’s lady St. Teresa Bulldogs are the state’s defending Class 2A 2019 volleyball champions as the COVID-19 pandemic forced a shutdown of all prep sports in March depriving us of our original March Madness tournaments and our season ending spring sports championships.

         The mask mandate certainly is most difficult on volleyball players who are competing. With all the shifting, jumping and diving, keeping a mask applied correctly isn’t easy.  Having it slip down in the heat of the moment and not recognizing it seems common enough.

It’s  important to note the kids did their part all throughout the 2020-21 athletic year when it came to following COVID-19 protocols.  They were among the most consistent and diligent in that regard, and they set an example.

The Aug. 4 announcement from Gov. J.B. Pritzker that masks temporarily will be required within indoor recreation settings largely was met with a mix of reluctant sighing and outright frustration.

It’s an understandable reaction from a group that includes volleyball and girls’ swimming and diving types. They saw mask mandates dropping away in recent months, only to abruptly return the COVID-19 delta variant partially has led to a spike in cases.

But just think about where we all were this time last year as it pertains to high school sports. There was no volleyball season on the horizon.  Forget not having to wear masks at a football game or boys’ soccer match, because those two sports weren’t scheduled to take place last fall, either.

I will have more on this story in a future print edition of the Decatur Tribune.


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