By Matthew DeGeorge
For most of the sports world, the final normal day of 2020 before the onset of COVID-19 closures was March 13, the second Friday of that month.
The curtain fell a week earlier at Penn Wood. The last organized varsity sports event in the district, Penn Wood boys basketball’s loss to Archbishop Ryan in the first round of the PIAA Class 5A tournament, is now more than 10 months in the past. It preceded the near-global cancellation of the spring sports season throughout Pennsylvania and the Del Val League’s unique decision to push its fall competition to the spring.
That massive hiatus has created a profound challenge for winter coaches like Matt Lindeman, the Patriots’ boys basketball coach, just to get everyone on the same page and back in the gym for a season.
“It’s a huge challenge,” Lindeman said this week. “This season, it’s going to all be about giving the kids an outlet to get their mind off everything they’ve gone through. Results are going to be secondary. It’s going to be about giving our kids a chance to play.”