Apache Junction High School’s 4A Conference play-in game against Peoria on Friday has been called off due to new health metric numbers related to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The daily new cases per 100,000 in Pinal County went from 119 to 168 in the last week. In addition, the number of daily new cases per 100,000 in Maricopa County rose from 133 to 212, according to a release.
“We do not feel it is safe to put the student athletes and coaches out together to play with such rapidly increasing numbers,” Heather Wallace, executive director of educational services for the Apache Junction Unified School District, said in the release.
Apache Junction High football coach Bruce Binkley said while it was tough to hear of the game’s cancellation, he agreed with the decision.
“I think the safety of the kids comes first,” Binkley said.
Binkley added that 90% of the parents he talked to Thursday agreed with the decision as well and that when he told his players of the cancellation, “they took it a lot better than how you think they would.”
Apache Junction finished the season 3-2 and ranked No. 8 in the 4A Conference.
“I thought we had a great year and started to build on something,” Binkley said. “People ain’t seen nothing yet.”