The virulent nature of the COVID-19 virus was demonstrated once again over the weekend, when it knocked WVU alumni squad Best Virginia out of the 2020 TBT.
After one team member received a positive test result late last Thursday, the squad immediately went into lockdown, but that was apparently too late to prevent a spread.
“Immediately following that, the group was notified and we stressed the importance of isolation, arranging a test result through their healthcare provider, or a local health group that could offer them,” Best Virginia media relations director David Ryan told BlueGoldNews.com. “Since the initial test, several players have tested positive and are in isolation and lockdown, following health recommendations from their providers, health agencies and also information on the CDC website about exposure with and without symptoms.”
These initial tests came in advance of the first set of tests that were to be conducted by TBT, but Best Virginia members had arranged testing on their own prior to that official testing protocol. When one of those came back positive, it set off the dominoes that resulted in the withdrawal from TBT.
“Due to a player testing out of caution and being diagnosed, we went ahead and asked the guys each to seek a test through their provider as soon as possible, to make sure we could all could seek the care they needed and to prevent additional cases,” Ryan explained.
While there was still just enough of a window to quarantine the remainder of the team if just one player had tested positive (which, in the end, was not the case), the Best Virginia members decided to withdraw anyway in order to protect other teams and to ensure all of its members could get treatment, if necessary.
“The TBT folks have been nothing but great to us and our team,” Ryan emphasized. “When they called us, they offered us a window to compete with criteria – additional testing, but also that if another player tested positive we would be automatically out. Knowing that we had already conducted tests on our own, we erred on the side of caution and made the collective call between the coaches and the players on the call to withdraw. Since then, additional members of the team have tested positive, so we were right (with that decision).
“We also wanted to give the team that would replace us a better chance to be ready, organized and be aware of the risks of following COVID-19 guidelines very, very seriously,” Ryan added. “It’s only because we were aware of what we needed to do that we all got tested as soon as possible, and knew to work with contact tracers when they called. We hope every remaining team follows those guidelines.”
Best Virginia’s players and staff have been doing their own contact tracing since getting the word of their positive tests, getting in touch with everyone who had been at practices in order to notify them of the situation and alert them to the need for testing of their own.
“We know how highly contagious COVID-19 can be, especially with close contact in sports. It’s because of that we reached out, explained caution, and to follow the guidelines provided by their healthcare providers, local health agencies and the CDC,” Ryan noted.