Members of the New Hampton/Turkey Valley wrestling coaching staff are masked up as they wait for one of their Chickasaws to take the mat at Saturday’s Class 2A sectional meet.

Masks small price to pay for prep athletes

NH/TV wrestlers are just grateful that they’re getting to compete this winter

Carson Babcock doesn’t leave home without it, his mask that is.

Ditto for Jacob Reicks and the rest of the New Hampton/Turkey Valley wrestling team. 

“Seriously, I don’t go anywhere without it,” Babcock said Sunday, a day after rolling through his bracket at the Class 2A sectional meet in Decorah. “Am I really careful? Absolutely. I don’t want to get knocked out because of this stuff.”

And so as Iowa kicked off its winter sports postseason, the athletes who will take the mat and the court aren’t taking any chances when it comes to COVID-19.

“I think one of the things we’ve seen is the kids have really understood the repercussions of not doing everything they can,” New Hampton Superintendent Jay Jurrens said. “They’re wearing masks, they’re social distancing, they’re doing all the things they can do to make sure they get their seasons.”

And as weird as this 2020-21 season has been — with its limited fans, tournaments with no fans and all that — the kids don’t seem to mind; after all, they’re getting to play the sports they love.

— For more on this story, see the Feb. 9 Tribune

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