One other second of historical past should watch for 2021. The early September highschool soccer recreation that includes South Pointe of Rock Hill and Myers Park of Charlotte has formally been canceled, a Carolina Panthers official confirmed with The Herald on Friday afternoon. The sport would’ve been the primary highschool soccer recreation to be performed in Charlotte’s Bank of America Stadium, the house of the NFL’s Carolina Panthers. Riley Fields, director of group relations for the Panthers, instructed The Herald in a telephone interview Friday that faculty officers from South Pointe and Myers Park met Thursday. He stated these within the assembly shared the understanding that there wasn’t an alternative choice to canceling the sport. “Based on the important safety guidelines that have been set by both the North Carolina High School Athletic Association and the South Carolina High School League — and that includes the first day of practice and the first allowable game date — the decision was made the go ahead and cancel the game on Sept. 5 of this year,” Fields stated. “And the thing I want to emphasize is player safety is the main priority in this decision, and we’re fully supportive of the current guidelines that have been set by both state associations.” The possibilities of the sport appeared bleak properly earlier than the 2 colleges met with the Carolina Panthers on Thursday: On July 15, the NCHSAA introduced it could delay the beginning of highschool fall sports activities observe till Sept. 1 because of the rising risk of the COVID-19 pandemic. Per NCHSAA guidelines, soccer gamers will need to have eight days of observe earlier than taking part in, together with three in full pads. Meaning the earliest a recreation could possibly be performed is Sept. 10. And the cross-state matchup was scheduled for Sept. 5. In the identical vein, in South Carolina, the SCHSL stated the earliest the 2020 highschool soccer season may begin is Sept. 11. “It is disappointing,” Fields stated. “You know, the prospect of a game has been exciting to think about, talk about, and visualize. And the enthusiasm and support for Myers Park and South Pointe was just terrific. So while there’s disappointment that the game won’t be played this season, our plans are to look forward to 2021 and really finally establish this new tradition that ultimately celebrates high school football in the region.” South Pointe athletic director Adam Hare instructed The Herald on Friday that he was unhappy for the rising seniors on the soccer group who had been enthusiastic about this chance. He additionally stated he hopes this recreation could possibly be coordinated subsequent yr. “(The Panthers) kind of needed it to happen on Sept. 5 because that was the availability of the stadium,” Hare stated. “And so once our guidelines came out that we can’t start games until the 11th, it was kind of obvious that we weren’t going to play there.” Earlier than it was canceled, the sport provided thrilling prospects for Rock Hill residents and the Panthers group, which can quickly have its new headquarters and observe facility on a website off I-77 between Cherry Street and Dave Lyle Boulevard. “It’s more than just about the football team,” South Pointe soccer’s head coach DeVonte Holloman instructed The Herald in May, when information initially broke concerning the recreation. “It’s about our school, our community rallying around the Panthers and welcoming them at the same time.” South Pointe launched its soccer schedule Thursday afternoon. Barring any additional changes to the autumn sports activities schedule from the SCHSL, the group will open its season towards Catawba Ridge on Sept. 11.
Alex Zietlow writes about sports activities and the methods through which they intersect with life in York, Chester and Lancaster counties for The Herald, the place he has been an editor and reporter since August 2019. Zietlow has gained three S.C. Press Affiliation awards in his younger profession, together with a First Place in Sports activities Characteristic Writing. He graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in May 2019 and was a summer season sports activities intern for The Information & Observer in Raleigh, N.C., previous to coming to Rock Hill.