COVID-shortened season ‘very challenging’ for boys hoops team

Travis Cottrell, head coach of Appomattox Raiders boys varsity basketball team, is shown during a 2019-20 basketball game at Appomattox County High School. 

The constant shuffling of the 2020/21 Virginia High School League sports schedule amid the nearly year-long COVID-19 pandemic has caused frustration for many coaches and players alike. The Appomattox Raiders boys basketball program is no exception. 

Although the winter sports teams have managed to play a few (emphasis on “few”) more games than the spring 2020 teams who were shut down altogether, the day-to-day uncertainty still weighs heavily on those who have made sacrifices during the year — sacrifices by coaches to improve their teams and by players to improve their athletic skills. 

As of Tuesday, the Raiders boys varsity basketball squad has played a grand total of three games (1-2 record) out of what was originally supposed to be a 12-game condensed schedule. But due to varying factors, a number of those games have either been canceled or postponed with the regional playoffs on the horizon. 

Travis Cottrell, in his seventh year as Raiders boys varsity basketball coach, said this year has been a mental challenge for everyone in the program because the typical season routine has been highly disrupted. 

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