Minnesota high school sports teams play first games Thursday following COVID-19 pause

High school athletes in Minnesota are returning to the court and ice Thursday night as the state allows games to restart.

School athletics and youth sports were among activities that were limited when Governor Walz's COVID-19 pause went into effect in November.

The executive order was an effective end to fall sports and delayed the start for winter sports. But, in December, as COVID-19 cases began to trend down, Governor Walz announced practices could resume starting January 4, and competitions could start again on January 14.

However, the restart will come with some changes, including limited crowds for games, and players are required to wear masks at all times, with the exception of wrestling and gymnastics.