MARQUETTE — The Marquette Little League has been temporarily shut down due to one of the coaches of the Majors Division testing positive for COVID–19.
According to league president Shane Cromell, the coach was in Wisconsin last week for youth hockey games*. A hockey coach was feeling sick, so he was tested for COVID-19 when he returned to the Marquette area. He was told to self–quarantine until test results came back.
Not only did the coach not self–quarantine or tell anyone that he had been tested for the virus, he coached two Little League games in the following days. The results came back positive two days later, forcing the whole league to shut down.
“Right now, I shut everything down,” said Cromell. “The health department contacted everybody that has been in contact with him on the Little League side, and I’d imagine on the hockey side, to quarantine and do all that. So I just shut the whole league down until I know what’s going on.”
The Marquette County Health Department has begun contact tracing, which will include the players on the team and their families, as well as assistant coaches for the team.
There is currently no timeline for when the Majors Division will be restarting, but there is a chance for the lower divisions to start back up in the near future.
“When everybody that the health department tells me are going to get tested, when they get their results, we’ll have a board meeting and make a decision from there,” said Cromell. “My tee ball and rookies, after the holidays, they play at the Kaufman complex, I might start them back up and let them finish.”
However, Cromell is proceeding with extreme caution when it comes to the teams that use the same fields as the Majors Division.
“The teams that share those fields, well I can’t do anything with them,” Cromell said. “Actually the health department told me to play ball, just quarantine the three teams that were playing, but I’m not going to take any chance.”
The coach has been removed from the position, and has been permanently banned from attending Marquette Little League games and functions, though his children will be allowed to continue to play in the league.
ABC10 will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.
*An earlier version of this article stated that the coach who tested positive for COVID-19 was also a youth hockey coach based on information from Cromell. ABC10 has learned that while the coach was in Wisconsin for youth hockey, but he is not a coach of the team.