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.