The always-anticipated Oneida-Coalfield rivalry game will not happen this season, as the Indians have suspended football for two weeks due to Covid-19.
Oneida High School Athletics Director Jimmy May made the announcement Wednesday afternoon, saying that all games and practices will be canceled through October 30. Team practices will resume Monday, November 2, as the Indians prepare for their first round playoff game at Hampton, which is scheduled for November 6.
“Due to our concern for the health and well-being of our players, Oneida High School will be cancelling all practices and games through Friday, October 30,” May said in a tweet.
The Indians were without three starters who were quarantined when they traveled to Meigs County last week. At that point, however, Oneida had no positive cases of coronavirus.
With the Oneida-Coalfield game being canceled, Coalfield will have the option of attempting to pick up another opponent, or taking a win. The game will count as a no-contest for Oneida, meaning the Indians will end the regular season with a record of 4-4.
The announcement that Oneida is suspending play marks the first time any local sports team has been directly impacted by Covid-19, although Scott High has lost two games this season — against Whitley County and Austin-East — due to the pandemic. The Highlanders are scheduled to host Pigeon Forge on October 30.