COVID-19 parameters notwithstanding, Center Point Pirate fall athletics will sail forward with normal starting dates for practices and games at this time, pending the UIL’s announcement that allows Class 1A through 4A programs to keep their original schedules.
The Pirates begin football practices Aug. 3.
“It (the decision) floored me. I figured if they (UIL) started, everyone would start at the same time,” said Center Point head Athletic Director and head football coach Guy “Bubba” Walters.
“But I’m excited because we get to play 10 games as of now, and hopefully our kids, especially our seniors, don’t lose their seasons like they did when baseball, track and other spring sports were lost,” Walters said.
“The UIL has thrown a lot at us, but I’m excited because we get to play. Everything right now is on time with five pre-district and five District 14-2A games,” said Walters.
District certifications will happen in a variety of ways, however, with that being left up to each District Executive Committee according to Walters. Some may not play all games set on the schedule to take into account intangibles. For instance, Refugio out of District 15-2A begins district play on Sept. 18, plays two games, takes a bye, plays two more, has a bye, and ends with one more district game.
The Pirates did reconfigure their nondistrict schedule somewhat when SA St. Anthony and Texas Military Institute cancelled games and a scrimmage was dropped.
“We lost a scrimmage, but will still go against Comfort. We picked up Rocksprings and D’Hanis on the game schedule. And right now the junior varsity and middle school programs are set to play their regular schedule,” said Walters.
Walters also mentioned he has purchased 225 water bottles so each athlete from middle school on up has their own.
“We won’t have managers rushing out on the field with water due to just one of the requirements schools will navigate at this time,” Walters said.
“Almost business as usual” was also welcomed by new head cross country coach Shane Seipf.
“I’m happy at the decision. Fall sports are a mainstay in Texas. They give kids some hope. Sometimes sports is all they have,” Seipf said.
Seipf’s plans to start cross country Aug. 3 and have two weeks of morning workouts before the team’s first meet set in Comfort on Aug. 22.
“I’ve got a list of kids, mostly incoming freshmen and divided about 50-50 between boys and girls. I am really going to stress the sport to those and to middle schoolers, particularly those that may not be involved in football or volleyball, but need some extra conditioning for later, such as basketball,” said Seipf.