Olympia, WA

Dozens of Covid cases linked to four high school wrestling tournaments

Liam Ford

Four separate high school wrestling tournaments saw Covid-19 outbreaks in early December.| Photo by Dreier Carr via Wikimedia Commons

OLYMPIA, WA — High school wrestling tournaments in early December have been linked to nearly 100 cases of Covid-19, according to the Washington State Department of Health.

“The number of cases linked to the events is estimated between 80 and 90,” the department said today in a news release, “but as this investigation is ongoing, the total may change.”

Epidemiologists have traced the infections to four separate tournaments on Dec. 4:

  • Ed Arima Duals, in Sumner
  • Jon Birbeck Invitational, in Lacey
  • Lady Jags Kickoff Tournament, in Puyallup
  • Yelm Girls Varsity, in Yelm

Participants hailed from 13 different counties (and one high school in Oregon):

  • Clark
  • Cowlitz
  • Grays Harbor
  • King
  • Kitsap
  • Lewis
  • Mason
  • Skagin
  • Snohomish
  • Pierce
  • Thurston
  • Whatcom
  • Yakima

Both vaccinated and unvaccinated people were affected by the outbreaks, the DOH said.

Anyone who attended one of the events — including competitors, coaches, referees, spectators, and staff — is encouraged to monitor for symptoms and get tested.

Anyone with symptoms or who tests positive should stay home.

“This outbreak serves as a clear reminder that Covid-19 continues to spread in our communities,” the DOH said in the release.

They encourage people 16 and older to get booster shots as soon as they can, and for kids between 5 and 11 to start getting vaccinated immediately.

Booster shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for 16- and 17-year-olds were made available last week.

“Ensuring booster doses are available to as many people as possible will add an extra layer of protection across our communities this winter, help keep families healthy as we gather this holiday season, and increase immunity as the omicron variant spreads worldwide,” said secretary of health Umair A. Shah in a news release on Dec. 9.

Vaccine or booster appointments can be made by visiting the Washington Department of Health’s Vaccine Locator, Vaccines.gov, or by calling 833-VAX-HELP.

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