COVID-19 Impacts Warrensburg High School sports

  While COVID-19 has suspended UCM athletic competition until January 1, Warrensburg High School athletics are still competing. Practices and competitions have changed compared to previous years, but coaches are still optimistic for their students’ abilities and proud of their performances and adaptability.

  Keith Chapman, the Activities Director at Warrensburg High School, said COVID-19 has changed athletics and extracurricular activities at the school in multiple ways, including a mask ordinance and restricted attendance at events. The school has also had to relocate events, like band and choir concerts, to larger venues to allow for social distancing.

  Individual teams have had to adapt as well. Bryan Olivas, the head coach of the boys’ and girls’ soccer teams, said the in-season boys’ soccer team is a young team that includes five freshmen. Olivas said the team is “learning and improving” every game. He also said the team has changed the way practices are run, and they have had to cancel games.

  Already dealing with COVID-19, another significant change for the school’s teams has been practice sites. The Warrensburg School District is in the process of executing a plan that will upgrade facilities for a growing school district. These upgrades include a new stadium with turf field and a new track, both at the high school.

  Teams are being required to practice away from where they normally would  

because of the construction of these facilities. 

  Olivas said the boys’ soccer team has had to move practices from on campus to Maple Grove Elementary School and UCM. The football team has had to practice strictly at Warrensburg Middle School.

  Bill Brooks, first year head volleyball coach, said this spring and summer were different because the club volleyball scene in the region was shut down, and players were introduced to COVID-19. The differences, in turn, limited the amount of contact he could have with his team. 

  Although Brooks is in his first year as head coach, he talked about how he has been around successful programs and sees positive traits in his team. He said he believes with growth, they could be in the running for a conference championship. 

  “This group is full of athleticism, of talent, of effort,” Brooks said. 

  Despite numerous changes, the Warrensburg High School athletic department has reason for optimism. Although acknowledging there will be games cancelled, Chapman pointed out that Warrensburg’s students are still able to participate in extracurricular activities, unlike many high schools across the United States.

  “Our kids are getting to perform right now,” Chapman said.

  Chapman expressed excitement about the end result of the new facilities, saying he has two-fold excitement as the activities director and for the new facilities bringing “a sense of pride in our community.”

  The boys’ soccer team is splitting their home games between Knob Noster High School and the UCM South Recreation Complex. The volleyball team plays its home games at the high school gym. Volleyball will have free admission to its home games.