The Phase III guidelines for youth, adult, and school sports have been updated with good news for the R.I. Interscholastic League.

On page five of a nine-page document that was released on Wednesday morning, it stipulates that “games and competition between stable groups for low and moderate risk sports may occur and should incorporate modifications that reduce close physical or face-to-face contact. It is strongly encouraged that no more than two teams occupy a venue during a game.”

Sports that fall in the low and moderate risk category include all the winter sports that the RIIL is offering: basketball, hockey, indoor track & field, gymnastics, and swimming.

Awaiting word about the status of games had been the final piece to the puzzle that the Interscholastic League had been waiting to hear. The Governor’s Executive Order that prohibited any competitions between schools ran through Tuesday.

Member schools have been told that games and meets can begin on Friday.

“We all recognize and appreciate that Rhode Island athletes have had to sacrifice a lot during the pandemic, and in recent weeks by not engaging in competitions. Similarly, indoor sports facilities have suffered during the pauses,” said DEM Director Janet Coit, who has led state efforts regulating sports throughout the pandemic. “Although school sports will experience a shortened winter season, we hope that participating in competitive games and meets will benefit our kids’ physical and mental wellness and help them feel more connected to their school communities.”

Follow Brendan McGair on Twitter @BWMcGair03

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