Tag: Charlie Baker

MIAA Waives Masks For Outdoor Sports; Masks For Some Indoors

Massachusetts high school lacrosse players will no longer need to wear masks under their helmets or on the sidelines, per today’s announcement from the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA). (PHOTO COURTESY: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

By Matt Noonan

Following yesterday’s announcement from Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker about lifting Covid-19 restrictions next Saturday, May 29, the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association (MIAA) issued a statement this morning that masks and facial covers will no longer be required for those competing outdoors.

The MIAA Sports Medicine Committee (SMC) “voted unanimously” to approve the guidelines the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs (EEA) unveiled yesterday that would allow both youth and amateur sports participants to “no longer require face coverings for youth athletes 18 and under while playing outdoors.” The remaining restrictions will be lifted effectively on May 29.

In addition to no longer needing a face mask or covering while competing outside, student-athletes will no longer need to wear them on the bench or in a dugout. Those that compete in low-risk sports indoors will not have to wear a mask or face covering as long they can maintain at least 14 feet or more from other participants. Face masks and coverings will be required for those attending indoor events such as boy’s volleyball matches but not needed for outdoor contests, pending fans can safely distance themselves from others.

Excluding today’s decision on masks and facial coverings, no changes will be made to the MIAA sports modifications. However, the governing body of Massachusetts high school sports did say they would review the EEA guidelines as restrictions are lifted.

Mass. To Lift Covid-19 Restrictions for Amateur & Youth Sports on May 29

The Intercity Baseball League (ICL) is one of many amateur sports leagues to watch and follow this summer. (PHOTO COURTESY: Craig Henry)

By NoontimeSports.com

Massachusetts amateur and youth sports leagues will start to look more like they did prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, beginning tomorrow, Tuesday, May 18 with the state permitting athletes “18 and under” to no longer wear a face-covering while competing outdoors. 11 days later — Saturday, May 29, to be exact — all restrictions will be lifted.

This exciting news was announced earlier today by both Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker and Lt. Governor Karyn Polito during a press conference and it should spark excitement amongst many in the amateur and youth sports world here in Massachusetts, including the Intercity Baseball League (ICL) that announced in March that they would return to the diamond on Tuesday, June 1 after canceling their 2020 season last July.

Massachusetts updated its guidance for both youth and adult amateur sports activities — leagues, coaches, players, and participants can learn more by CLICKING HERE.

Today’s news will also benefit leagues like Boston Ski & Sports Club (BSSC), which is set to run multiple leagues over the next few months, including flag football, ultimate frisbee, coed soccer, and 7-on-7 field hockey.

Simply Social Sports (S3), which currently is running three leagues, has openings in five future leagues, including Tuesday softball at Teddy Ebersol Field.

Today’s news seemed to bring a smile to the faces of the Cambridge Nor’easters, a box lacrosse team based in Cambridge, Massachusetts that competes in the Interstate Box Lacrosse Association (IBLA).

“Big news for IBLA in MA: Starting May 29, all youth and amateur sports restrictions will end,” the Nor’easters tweeted.

The same enthusiasm was shared in a similar tweet from Massachusetts Bay Youth Lacrosse League (MBYLL).

Mass. Set To Reopen Fully on May 29; Fans Could Return To The Stands At Full Capacity

Expect to see more fans in the stands in the coming weeks at Gillette Stadium, not just for the New England Revolution, but also the New England Patriots. (PHOTO COURTESY: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

By Matt Noonan

Monday was an exciting day for many in the state of Massachusetts as Governor Charlie Baker announced all Covid-19 restrictions will be lifted effective Saturday, May 29, which means it’s possible that we could see Fenway Park and Gillette Stadium operate at 100 percent capacity on that particular day.

Both the Boston Red Sox and New England Revolution will be at home on Saturday, May 29, but no announcement from either team has been made about how many fans will be admitted for each contest. Additionally, the TD Garden will be able to host more fans, pending the Boston Bruins and Boston Celtics are still competing in their respective postseason tournament.

Baker said he will end the State of Emergency on Tuesday, June 15.

Most likely, today’s announcement means Gillette Stadium will be filled for the upcoming New England Patriots season — the team unveiled its 2021 season last Wednesday, May 12, and will kick-off their three-game preseason at home on Thursday, August 12 against the Washington Football Team.

Starting tomorrow, Tuesday, May 18, youth and amateur sports leagues will no longer have to wear “face coverings.” And on Saturday, May 29, “all youth and amateur sports restrictions will be lifted.”

Massachusetts Updates Its Phase III, Step I Sports & Recreation Protocols

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The state of Massachusetts shifted soccer from a high-risk sport to a moderate risk activity on Friday, July 24. (PHOTO: Matt Noonan/NoontimeSports.com)

By Matt Noonan 

Earlier this month, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker decided the state was ready to move into the third phase of its reopening, which allowed for games and competitions for some sports to begin under the first step of the protocols, including adult, amateur, and youth baseball.

One sport – soccer – was initially deemed a high-risk activity, but was recently downgraded to the moderate risk category on Friday – we learned of this change earlier today from Matt Feld, who is a reporter for the Boston Herald.

In addition to reclassifying soccer, two other sports – cross-country and individual crew – were downgraded from moderate risk to lower risk.

The latest update of which sports the state considers lower, moderate and higher risk can be found HERE.

As noted in the state’s document for sports and recreational activities in Phase III, Step I, all sports, including lower risk athletics such as tennis, swimming, and horseback riding, must adhere to the ‘type of play’ guidelines in order to successfully compete in both games and practices. The four types of play are listed below:

  • Level 1: Individual or socially distanced group activities (no-contact workouts, aerobic conditioning, individual skill work, and drills)
  • Level 2: Competitive Practices (Intra-team/group games, contact drills, and scrimmages)
  • Level 3: Competitions (Inter-team games, meets, matches, races, etc.)
  • Level 4: Tournaments (Outdoor only)

The news of today’s tweak from Gov. Baker’s office should be viewed as a positive – perhaps it means if high school sports were to occur this fall, these three sports, along with a few others could be allowed to at least practice or participate in some inter-team games. But today’s news does not bode well for football, which remains a high-risk activity, along with wrestling, rugby, basketball, lacrosse, ice hockey, competitive cheerleading, martial arts, and ultimate frisbee

Those that play football at say the high school or youth level in Massachusetts are permitted to participate in either individual or socially distanced group activities.

Daily Noontime: Friday, July 24, 2020

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By NoontimeSports.com 

It’s Friday – yay, we made it!

Welcome to a brand new weekend, which is going to be HOT here in New England, so make sure to drink plenty of water and wear some sunscreen, too.

Let’s kickoff National Drive-Thru Day with a brand new Daily Noontime – let’s go!


Noontime’s Headlines for Friday, July 24, 2020 

  • Aaron Judge and the New York Yankees began their 60-game sprint with a 4-1 win last night over the Washington Nationals.

    Judge recorded a pair of hits in the “rain-shortened” game last night – once again, he will be a player to watch over the next few weeks and months.

  • Mookie Betts and the Los Angeles Dodgers commenced their 60-game season last night with a convincing 8-1 win over the San Francisco Giants. Remember when Mookie played for the Boston Red Sox?
  • In case you missed it, the Independent School League (ISL) announced yesterday that they will not be playing many games this fall due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

    According to Danny Ventura of the Boston Herald, the ISL will not have championships this fall nor dish out awards. The league does, however, hope to provide some competition this fall, pending it is safe to do so.

  • Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker will toss the ceremonial first pitch this evening before the Boston Red Soxplay their initial game of the 2020 season against the Baltimore Orioles.
  • Speaking of the Red Sox, here are a few storylines to follow this season – well, more these next few weeks and months.