LHS football season paused after player tests positive for COVID-19


Owen Musser

The football stadium is empty once more after a player tests positive for COVID-19, temporarily pausing the season.

By Andrew Phalen, Sports Editor

After a dominant 42-14 win Friday night, the undefeated Chesty Lion football players had their eyes set on a match-up with the reigning 5A state champion Mill Valley Jaguars. Unfortunately, due to a COVID case for Lawrence, the game will not occur. 

On Saturday afternoon, students and parents received word that a player had tested positive for COVID-19. The player had last been with the team for Thursday practice, but attended an inter-squad scrimmage on Wednesday. Executive Director of Communications Julie Boyle stated in an email that the entire JV and varsity rosters had been quarantined. In total, 69 players and two coaches are under self-quarantine.

 “As a precaution, the district will be notifying the LHS Varsity and JV football players, and affected coaches, that they are mandated by public health officials to self-quarantine through Sept. 30,” Boyle said in an email to LHS families. 

During the 1918 influenza pandemic, Lawrence High athletics also missed games. The 1919 Red & Black yearbook relays the loss of games and a banquet for players as schools shut down in October and December of 1918. 

While the team is disappointed, players have a positive outlook on the two weeks off. 

“We are all bummed out about it, but also thankful we still get to have a seven-game season,” senior linebacker Blake Schimmel said. “We are sort of treating it like a bye week.” 

Players also recognized that the quarantine was necessary for them to continue their season. 

“None of us did anything wrong, but if this is one of the steps we need to take to get back on the field then I’m all for it,” junior offensive lineman Acen Villegas said when asked about the forced hiatus. “It’s out of our hands now.” 

The Lions aren’t the only football team to face a quarantine. Free State —. And last month Blue Valley West quarantined more than 100 football players after three tested positive. This is the second LHS team to have to quarantine this season, the entire cross country team was self-quarantined for a two week period earlier this season. 

The football season was off to a great start, with Lawrence High outscoring their opponents 151-21. The Chesty Lions are next set to take on Bishop Carroll on Oct. 2, one day after the quarantine ends.