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As Maui high school sports league allows spectators at games, some call strict rules unfair

Published: Oct. 26, 2021 at 6:40 PM HST|Updated: Oct. 26, 2021 at 7:33 PM HST
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WAILUKU (HawaiiNewsNow) - New rules on Maui will now let spectators return to the stands for high school sports — but fans will be very limited.

The Maui Interscholastic League set strict rules for fans beginning this week. Only fully vaccinated parents of the athletes from the home team are allowed to attend the games.

That means, Chloe Toma, a vaccinated senior at Baldwin High School, won’t be allowed to watch her younger brother play football.

“I was really looking forward to seeing my brother play his first year of high school football. But now that we’re not allowed to go to the games, only my mom is allowed to go.” said Toma.

“It’s pretty disappointing because I was really ready to cheer him on.”

Olivia Dubach, also a fully vaccinated senior at Baldwin High School senior, said the rule doesn’t make sense.

“It’s great that parents can go. But at school, we fill up classrooms with 30 plus kids. Half of them are not even vaccinated, so why can’t we be outside?” Dubach said.

The MIL’s rules are different from the Oahu Interscholastic Association rules which allow anyone who is fully vaccinated to attend games.

The league said it’s being especially prudent because its members are a mix of public and private schools each governed by their own distinctive protocols and guidelines.

“I think it’s great that the parents are allowed to go at least, but I also think students should be able to go if they’re fully vaccinated,” Toma said.

Toma and Dubach are student athletes themselves and play for the school’s soccer team.

They hope the league will reconsider as COVID case counts fall, especially since there were just two infections reported on Tuesday.

“It makes a world of difference in the field when you’re in the middle of game, when you’re stressed, when you’re tired,” said Dubach.

“Having those people cheer you on, even if it’s just a few extra people, saying,’ Yeah! Go! Go!’ It just adds so much more. It hypes you up, like truly.”

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