High School Football

Catawba Ridge football’s last game of season canceled due to disease breakout

The Catawba Ridge football team will not play the final game of the program’s inaugural season due to a disease outbreak among Catawba Ridge players, according to a Fort Mill school district media release.

“The school received information regarding a few cases of Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease (HFMD) among the varsity football team,” the release read.

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease is a viral illness that typically affects children, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Symptoms include fever, mouth sores and a skin rash.

“HFMD is a common childhood illness which is usually not serious, and nearly all people recover in 7 to 10 days without medical treatment,” reads the district’s statement. “It can be transmitted through direct contact and as an extra precaution we are canceling tonight’s football game against Ardrey Kell High School.”

Hand, Foot and Mouth Disease can be spread through coughing or sneezing, according to the CDC. To prevent spreading the disease, people should wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, disinfect dirty surfaces and items and avoid close contact with infected people.

The Fort Mill school district is following S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control guidelines for dealing with the disease, the release states.

“Maintenance and support staff will be sanitizing locker room areas and sporting equipment along with bathrooms and desks throughout the school,” the release states. “While HFMD does not pose a significant health risk, we want to be proactive in containing the possible spread of the illness.”

If parents see students with symptoms, they should contact their family physician, according to the district.

With the cancellation, the Copperheads finish the year 2-7.

Catawba Ridge didn’t have any seniors on its roster, and because it wasn’t in a region, the team wasn’t going to play in the postseason.

Alex Zietlow covers sports for The Herald, where he has been an editor and reporter since August 2019. He graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill in May 2019 and was a summer sports intern for The News & Observer in Raleigh, N.C., prior to coming to Rock Hill.