Novi’s hockey team in quarantine after ‘close contact’ with COVID-19 positive player
Novi’s hockey team was cleared to play its quarterfinal game against Trenton on Tuesday by the Oakland County Health Department after the Wildcats were initially considered close contact with a positive COVID case -19.
The Wildcats faced a South Lyon Unified player on Thursday who, 48 hours after facing Novi, tested positive for COVID-19.
According to Novi head coach Mark Vellucci, the South Lyon Unified player only played on the ice against his team for 10 minutes. As defined by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, a “close contact” is a person who has been within six feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes two days before the onset of illness.
Novi’s sports department contacted the health department to justify his ability to continue playing, which he managed to do.
“After several discussions with the Oakland County Health Division, they were ready to reconsider their initial decision. We were able to help them understand the minimum exposure that occurred during the game and demonstrate the lack of close contacts, ”the director of community schools in Novi said in a statement.
“I appreciate the willingness of the Oakland County Department of Health to listen to us, support these student athletes, and let us play.”
Michigan High School Athletic Association director of communications Geoff Kimmerly said the MHSAA was in no way involved in the decision and the decision rests with the Oakland County Department of Health.
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Gordon said Novi has access to rapid antigen testing and is “desperate to prove that we are safe” and will do anything to be competitive.
South Lyon athletic director Mike Teagan was unavailable for comment at the time of posting, as was Trenton athletic director James Trush.
Novi defeated Livonia Stevenson, 2-1, in the regional final on Saturday for her 11th regional title in school history and her first since 2015.
Novi will play in Trenton in the Division 2 quarterfinal at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Dearborn Ice Skating Center.