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Sioux Falls Pentagon to host multiple tournaments in the coming weeks.

Published: Feb. 24, 2021 at 10:49 PM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - As teams prepare for their conference tournaments, representatives for the Sanford Pentagon say all of the conferences had to work together to help make these games a reality.

“The conferences have been wonderful to work with. The NSIC, the Summit League, and the High School Activities Association have been able to collaborate to make a set of protocols and a set of standards that really apply across the board,” says Jesse Smith Vice President of Operations for Sanford sports.

This year’s games will look very different than in past years, with many updates and changes to health and safety guidelines being put in place.

Summit League Commissioner Tom Douple stated; “we spent an enormous amount of our staff time on developing protocols. Trying to help mitigate the risk of exposure of the virus to our student-athletes has been our highest priority.”

Some of the protocols include regular covid-19 testing for both players and staff as well as plexiglass between the limited number of fans and the players on the court.

While everyone may not believe the event will be completely safe, Thomas Lee, Executive director of Sioux Falls Sports Authority says otherwise.

“It’s incredibly safe just because of the precautions we have in place. We changed venues, the practice courts will all be in the same venue. There are going to be 100 total fans potentially in that arena. I say fans, I mean family members out of a 3,000-seat facility,” says Lee.

While the tournaments will look much different than in the past, most of the players are just excited to still have their conference tournaments after a year in which many sporting events were canceled.

“I think there is a great appreciation both by the schools and the coaches and the players that they have that opportunity so they’re very respectful of the protocols they understand the testing that needs to occur they understand why they can’t shake hands before games and after games,” Smith said.

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