Well, COVID wins again, at least for a while, anyhow. No non-family members are permitted to attend public high-school basketball games in Fairfax County for the near future.
A recent decision was made to allow only family members, mainly parents, to be in the stands, and wearing masks, at high-school games because of lofty positive COVID numbers spiking all over in recent days.
So stands are pretty much empty right now, and certainly a lot more quiet, at games. Unfortunately, there are none of those large, loud, fun and rowdy student sections in attendance watching games, wearing crazy outfits and dueling across the bleachers with such rival sections. That was the case at many games during previous weeks of the 2021-22 season.
Basically, it’s just parents sitting on their hands mostly now, clapping a bit at times, yet still being nasty to the referees more than anything. But there is no hooting and hollering or “I believe we will win,” cheering.
The situation was the same late last season, when just a few parents eventually were permitted inside gyms to watch games. No spectators were allowed before that. There were near-empty gyms, with only necessary school administrators, those working the games, like scorekeepers, and maybe a media member on occasion.
One of the best things about high-school basketball games are the large and vocal crowds, especially on Friday nights and in those many small gymnasiums that still exist. Those atmospheres are electric for so many to participate in and enjoy.
Maybe the COVID numbers will quickly fall in coming days, so the spectator rules will revert back to earlier this season. That way, high-school basketball games, and all other indoor prep competitions in other winter sports, can be all-comers events again, so all can come and enjoy the noise.
Fingers crossed that occurs soon.