HARRISBURG, Pa. — Saturday's highly anticipated high school football clash between neighborhood rivals Bishop McDevitt and Harrisburg has been called off due to rising COVID-19 numbers at McDevitt.
The game had been set to kick off at 1 p.m. Saturday at Harrisburg's Severance Field.
In a post on the Bishop McDevitt Athletics Facebook page Wednesday afternoon, McDevitt athletic director Tommy Mealy said the cancellation is due to recent close-contact exposure to COVID-19 among the football team.
McDevitt's girls soccer team is also canceling its game scheduled for Wednesday for the same reason, the post states.
"After careful consideration with the administration and coach staff, we feel due to the rise in numbers of COVID-19 cases, close-contact exposures, quarantine, and the number of students reporting illness, it is prudent for us to maintain the health and safety of our students and the students on the opposing team until we belive the COVID-19 exposures amongst our athletes is under control and reduced," the post says.
McDevitt currently has had 10 reported positive COVID-19 cases in the last 24 hours, the post continues.
"We feel it is important we continue to monitor COVID-19 exposure among our immediate community and these numbers are reflective of the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in our county which is in the substantial rate of transmission," the post says. "This was not an ideal or easy decision to arrive at. We know many of our student athletes will be affected by the cancellation of these games. However, after consideration of all factors involved, the health and safety of students must remain the focal point of our mission to keep all students and the community safe."
If case counts are reduced by Monday, all football and girls soccer activities will resume on Tuesday, the post concludes.
The Crusader football team is scheduled to face Palmyra on Sept. 17.