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Durango seniors pulled from basketball court for 10-day quarantine

COVID-19 exposure within school cohort deemed close contact

Five Durango High School girls basketball seniors were pulled off the court while warming up for Tuesday’s road game at Pagosa Springs.

The players were removed after Durango School District 9-R learned of at least one positive COVID-19 case within a senior cohort group at DHS. Though none of the players removed ahead of Tuesday’s game against the Pirates had tested positive or shown any symptoms of having the coronavirus, their close contact with at least one student who did test positive was enough to mandate a 10-day quarantine.

One Durango High School senior boys basketball player also was not allowed to play Tuesday night after making the trip to Pagosa Springs. District athletic director Ryan Knorr said one senior wrestler also will have to quarantine.

“I got a text that a student had tested positive, and we worked with the district to confirm. Once we built a roster of who was a close contact, we saw the roster of kids who needed to quarantine included student-athletes,” Knorr said. “We’re still waiting to confirm the exact dates of when that 10-day quarantine would have gone into effect. There are multiple positives and situations we are still ironing out.”

The boys and girls basketball teams traveled Tuesday afternoon to Pagosa Springs on school buses. However, the entire teams have not had to quarantine because nobody on the trip has tested positive or shown symptoms.

“That’s all secondary exposure, according to our flow chart of who is impacted,” Knorr said of the teams traveling together. “Nobody on the buses are positive or have any symptoms, but the six pulled out who are quarantined had exposure within a classroom cohort to a positive. Everything else is secondary exposure at this time.”

The Durango girls lost 41-26 to Pagosa Springs after the chaos of the pregame warmups. DHS girls head coach Tim Fitzpatrick had no comment after the game.

Durango was slated to host Fruita Monument on Friday and Grand Junction on Saturday. Because DHS has enough players outside of quarantine to field a team, Friday’s games are still on as scheduled provided no players test positive or show symptoms before Friday’s games.

Knorr said he is working to potentially reschedule Saturday’s games because the Demons are supposed to celebrate senior day and the seniors will not be eligible to return in time.

Seven-week basketball seasons were started in late January across Colorado. Players have been required to wear masks even while playing because of the ongoing pandemic.

“There is kind of a belief that this only happens to Durango,” Knorr said. “It’s hard to convince people otherwise. But everyone is going through this at a lot of schools, and it isn’t only basketball that is impacted at our school because of this.”


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