Local health department steps in to save prep basketball season

Ray Hamill/ – Brandon Bento-Jackson in action for Arcata last season.

By Ray Hamill — The H-DNL received some good news on Wednesday after commissioner Jack Lakin met with local health officials.

The county health department will officially release an updated mask mandate for the H-DNL on Friday, allowing for the girls and boys basketball season to go ahead.

The season was in jeopardy with many local officials deciding not to officiate games this season if they were required to wear masks during games, as mandated by the California Department of Public Health.

Humboldt County officials, however, are opting to follow the example set by a growing number of counties around the state by issuing alternative guidelines.

Under the new county guidelines, all players, cheerleaders and officials participating on the court will not be required to wear masks, but everyone else in attendance will be required to wear one.

The league and local health officials are also strongly encouraging people to respectfully follow the required masking guidelines.

In addition, all student athletes will be required to be tested twice a week, with testing to occur the day before a scheduled event.

The basketball season officially tips off here on the North Coast on Friday night when the Arcata boys and girls teams travel to Hoopa.

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