Tough news for New Bedford High School football fans. The Friday night game against Attleboro that was set to be played at Paul Walsh Field will need to be rescheduled after in-school testing revealed some COVID-19 infections within the team.

Thomas Tarpey, NBHS Athletics Director, made the announcement this afternoon.

“It is unfortunate, but we knew going into this season that it was a possibility, not only for our Whalers but for teams across the country," he said. "Football is a high-contact sport so regular testing vigilance is critical to stemming the spread.”

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Wanda Nunes, the Director of Nurses for New Bedford Public Schools, said that this is exactly why the school sought to institute in school COVID-19 testing this school year. With parental consent, the information gathered from students that are tested offers a chance to stop the spread of the virus much quicker than if testing only occurred outside of school.

"Schools need to know in real-time if students and staff have been exposed to the virus so that immediate action can be taken to stop the virus from spreading," Nunes said.

It's been a tough few weeks for the Whalers, coming off losses to Taunton and Middleboro. New Bedford now faces at least one week off, and potentially more canceled games depending upon how many more players or coaches become infected.

"The NBPS COVID Tracker will go online in the coming days to keep the community informed," New Bedford Public Schools Superintendent Thomas Anderson said. "I urge parents and guardians to consent to in-school testing if they have not already done so. We will be providing regular updates as this very challenging time continues for all of us. As always I urge everyone to continue practicing good hygiene, wear masks and get vaccinated as it is the best tool of all.”

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