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Modesto High School Takes Extra Precautions for Student Athletes in the Heat

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MODESTO --

A sip of water for Modesto High School football players and a bit of relief from the heavy uniforms they usually wear, since the football players have been told by their coaches to wear only their upper body protective gear.

“Lot more breeze, a lot more breeze ...Yeah, the pants ... really restricting,” Cameron Cruce, the varsity team’s wide receiver said.

On Wednesday, with the city’s highs at 104 degrees, freshmen, junior varsity and varsity players have had their practice time cut on top of other safety measures to prevent heat related illnesses.

“Usually we got drill and then water. Now, we’re giving water breaks in middles of the drills,” Don Wallace, Modesto City School’s athletic director and Modesto High School's football head coach explained. Wallace said they’re taking every precaution to ensure player safety.

Not only do they have extra water on the sidelines they also have more eyes on the players.

“We’ll just keep an eye on them. We’ll have doctors on the sidelines for our games and all that good stuff. So you know, it’s about the kids. Keeping them safe,” Wallace said.

Modesto High also moved the freshmen game to Thursday instead of Friday, in anticipation of what may be the hottest day of the week.

“Hopefully it’ll be a little cooler about then. It’s still going to be hot, but it’ll be cooler, the sun will be set behind the stadium, so shouldn’t be as bad, plus we’re playing on grass,” the coach said.

They’re also asking the players to step in and do their part.

Cruce said coaches are urging players to eat healthy and hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.

“I usually drink the most water probably out of all ... of everyone on the team. Just because I like drinking the water,” Cruce said.

The head coach added that they will be taking the same precautions for the rest of the week’s practices. And another change, the junior varsity and varsity games have been pushed back on Friday in anticipation of the heat.