The girls' hockey team at the private Hill-Murray School has been shut down till March 8 after three of its players continued to turn up and play despite showing symptoms for COVID-19.
The Catholic school in Maplewood confirmed that its girls' team is canceling its next four days and shutting down its program in a letter to parents sent out on Wednesday.
The school says that three players who continued to play with the team and attend school despite showing symptoms of COVID-19 "as early as last Thursday" (Feb. 18) have since tested positive for the virus.
A further four players have since tested positive, and a further three in the rest of the student body. The school told FOX 9 that around 90 students are quarantining through March 2.
The boys' junior varsity program has also been placed in quarantine until March 6.
The Hill-Murray Pioneers played at two Class 2A games before the positive tests were confirmed, against Breck on Feb. 18 and North St. Paul/Tartan on Feb. 20. The North St. Paul team has subsequently canceled its next five games.
In the letter to parents seen by BMTN, school officials write: "These avoidable instances are a complete disregard for Hill-Murray's current school policy of not attending school or events if you are experiencing symptoms."
Competitive school sports were allowed to resume in January – provided masks are worn – after being shut down by Gov. Tim Walz during the COVID surge in November and December.
Health officials said it was one of the situations that presented a higher risk for COVID transmission, but sparked pushback from parents and spawned a pressure group called "Let Them Play MN" that filed lawsuits against the governor's executive orders.
Since sports was allowed to resume in January, the Minnesota Department of Health said there have been 85 COVID-19 outbreaks of 5 of more cases linked to them.