Augustana student-athlete tests positive for COVID-19

Coronavirus

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Augustana University completed the third and final phase of its plan to reopen facilities to student-athletes on Monday. 48 hours later, one of those individuals self-reported a positive COVID-19 test.

An Augustana athlete who participated in voluntary workouts at the Elmen Center on Monday has tested positive for COVID-19. Director of Athletics Josh Morton says he spoke with the athlete on Wednesday, and they’re already on the mend.

“The number one thing is that our student-athlete is feeling better and is on the road to recovery. That’s the most important thing, but then when we step back and look at the process and protocols, what did we learn, we feel good about where we’re at,” Morton said.

As a result of those protocols, the athlete who tested positive was in contact with a limited number of people.

“Part of our whole plan was we would put our athletes in the same cohort group so they would have the same 10 to 15 people that were together for those workouts,” Morton said.

Those individuals have been tested and will self-quarantine for 14 days. As Augustana prepares for fall semester, Morton says a positive test was inevitable.

“We are going to have a positive test and may have multiple positive tests throughout this time, but in our phased approach it’s all about getting our campus confident and ready to host our students,” Morton said.

Morton says a positive test on campus also makes COVID-19 a lot more real.

“When it’s somebody that you know that contracts the coronavirus I think for all of us it’s real and I know for our athletes I’m sure it’s the same,” Morton said.

An athletic trainer is checking in with the athletes who are currently in quarantine.

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