The role of COVID-19 on the Enochs football season

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Noah Kopecki, General Editor

As we near the end of the football season, one thing is clear. COVID-19 is still a problem we are all facing.

As all year, players have been exposed, testing positive, and missing games. For many, this is concerning. After missing the entirety of their junior year, senior athletes find themselves scrambling for scholarships and a chance to play at the next level.

Despite the hot start to the year, Enochs High School hasn’t been exempted from COVID-19 protocol. Starters QB Keith Orona, WR Kola Babalola, WR Isaac Adams, FB Yomi Babalola, and many others have all missed time due to social distancing. Leaving scholarship opportunities to be even more rare than the scholarship itself. 

However, this lack of preparation that Covid has forced hasn’t slowed down the Eagles, as Keith Orona continues to dominate opposing team’s defenses and put up career numbers. He is looking for a chance to showcase his talent.

Keith remains optimistic and is looking forward to the future.

When asked how Covid has affected his training regimen over the past 2 seasons, Keith’s response remained positive and showed the effect COVID truly had, as he responded with, “Covid has definitely played a huge role, there was a long period for me where I just didn’t have the motivation to do anything. With us being told that our season was gonna keep getting canceled it definitely got hard.”

However, as I dug further into the subject of cancellations and this season, Enochs’ QB1 gave me a glimpse of the concern the team lives in weekly. I asked how he felt about more and more games getting cancelled due to close contact and positive cases, and he said “It’s definitely heartbreaking, especially for me being a senior, this is my last guaranteed season.”

The young QB continued, “It sucks having to worry every week that we might get shut down.”

Despite all this, Keith remains positive in terms of gaining a late scholarship as he states, “I feel if I keep working hard and doing my job, I think there is definitely a chance for me. However, I am currently focused on winning.” Not only illustrating his attitude and positive attitude despite the negatives, but emphasizing his team spirit and moral moving forward. 

As Enochs comes down to the home stretch, it’s always good to have a positive attitude, and their QB is certainly emphasizing this idea. Despite the cancellations, limited practices, and injuries, Keith thinks they still have a good chance in playoffs.

It’s no secret that everyone is dealing with Covid, and it may carry potential problems for those going for scholarships. However, it seems that high school athletes are continuing to remain optimistic despite the harsh reality and frustration the situation brings.

As the season draws on, time will run out, but Keith Orona is making his presence felt, despite the problems outside of his control.

At the end of the day, that’s all you can do.