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14 COVID-19 cases linked to South Dakota wrestling tournament

The tournament in Sioux Falls, South Dakota included wrestlers from at least 52 Minnesota counties.

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At least 14 COVID-19 cases in nine Minnesota counties are linked to a Sioux Falls, South Dakota wrestling tournament, the Minnesota Department of Education announced Friday, April 9.

An email from the department of education said the Minnesota Department of Health is monitoring the outbreak, which can be traced to the Northland Youth Wrestling Association 2021 State Wrestling Tournament, a large kindergarten through eighth grade tournament that took place March 31 through April 3 in Sioux Falls.

About 2,000 wrestlers from 64 teams and at least 52 Minnesota counties took part. Among those counties are Cass, Crow Wing, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Todd and Wadena. As of April 9, 14 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Cass, Le Sueur, Lyon, Morrison, Murray, Rice, Todd, Wright and Yellow Medicine counties were linked to the tournament. Seven schools had confirmed cases related to the event, including five public and two nonpublic schools.

COVID-19: How many vaccines have central Minnesota counties administered? See the latest numbers

“Due to the close proximity and contact with another person, wrestling is a sport that carries a high risk for transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19,” the statement from the department of education read. “Given the lack of mitigation, including masking and social distancing among participants and spectators, there is an increased risk for exposure.”


Given the widespread geographical nature of this situation and the number of potential close contacts, all tournament participants and families are encouraged to seek testing and screen for any COVID-19 symptoms.

A list of community testing sites is available at bit.ly/3dRXTKE .

State officials also urge compliance with prevention efforts, including staying home when sick, adhering to masking and social distancing guidelines and delaying non-essential travel and social gatherings.

After traveling out of state, people should stay home and self-quarantine for seven days, even after testing negative. Those who do not get tested after traveling out of state should self-quarantine for 10 days.

“The state of Minnesota is experiencing high circulation of variants,” the department of education’s statement said. “It is currently estimated that 50% of all COVID-19 cases in Minnesota are the B.1.1.7. variant which spreads more easily. These prevention measures work for all variants.”

For more COVID-19 information, visit bit.ly/3t8hZ9T .

All 52 Minnesota counties represented at the wrestling tournament are: Anoka, Becker, Beltrami, Benton, Blue Earth, Brown, Carlton, Carver, Cass, Chippewa, Clay, Cottonwood, Crow Wing, Dakota, Dodge, Douglas, Faribault, Freeborn, Goodhue, Hennepin, Houston, Kandiyohi, Le Sueur, Lyon, Meeker, Mille Lacs, Morrison, Mower, Nicollet, Nobles, Olmstead, Pennington, Pipestone, Pope, Ramsey, Redwood, Rice, Rock, Scott, Sherburne, Sibley, Stearns, Steele, Swift, Todd, Wabasha, Wadena, Waseca, Washington, Watonwan, Wright and Yellow Medicine.

Local case numbers

All seven area counties reported new cases Monday, April 12, with Cass, Crow Wing, Mille Lacs, Morrison and Wadena counties seeing double-digit increases, while Todd County cases rose by four.


COVID-19 data as of April 12

  • Aitkin — 1,274 (+4 since Sunday), with 36 deaths; 6,608 residents have received at least one vaccine dose, representing 49% of the county’s 16-plus population.

  • Cass — 2,438 (+14) with 26 deaths; 9,627 residents with at least one dose, 41%.

  • Crow Wing — 5,964 (+24), with 86 deaths; 23,734 residents with at least one dose, 46%.

  • Mille Lacs — 2,725 (+13), with 48 deaths; 8,757 residents with at least one dose, 43%.

  • Morrison — 3,863 (+18), with 57 deaths; 9,927 residents with at least one dose, 38%.

  • Todd — 2,658 (+4), with 30 deaths; 6,496 residents with at least one dose, 34%.

  • Wadena — 1,412 (+12), with 21 deaths; 4,385 residents with at least one dose, 42%.

NOTE: These numbers are cumulative since March 21, 2020, and many are out of isolation.

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