University of South Carolina students cheer before agame against Tennessee last Saturday. Several parties and large gatherings coinciding with the game had to be broken up, as people celebrated the first game of the season, police said. Sean Rayford/Associated Press


COLUMBIA, S.C. — Several parties and large gatherings coinciding with the University of South Carolina’s football game had to be broken up Saturday, as people celebrated the first game of the season, police said.

Columbia Police told The State newspaper Wednesday that three social distancing citations and four warnings were issued to residences that house some USC students.

Police said the largest gathering was at Reign Living at the Stadium apartment complex near the Gamecocks’ Williams-Brice stadium, where about 300 people got together after the game.

Another citation was issued to a residence in the Five Points area, where about 100 people gather before the kickoff at 7:30 p.m.

Columbia police spokeswoman Jennifer Timmons said property owners were also cited for the social distancing violation.

Each violation was a 10-point infraction and if a property accumulates 15 points in a year span, property owners could get their rental permits revoked, according to city records.

University police were notified if a student was involved in the violations, Timmons said.

The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control said at least 143,623 people have tested positive for the coronavirus in South Carolina, and 3,186 have died.

POSTPONED: Appalachian State has postponed next week’s football game against Louisiana-Lafayette due to positive COVID-19 tests and contact tracing.

The school announced the move Thursday, six days before the teams were set to meet in Sun Belt Conference play in Boone, North Carolina. The game will be rescheduled for either Dec. 4 or 5.

The school said “all active cases” are recovering in isolation, while close contacts identified through contact tracing must quarantine.

Appalachian State is scheduled to play again Oct. 14 at Georgia State in the second of two straight Wednesday games. That game is unaffected as of now.

In a statement, Appalachian State athletics director Doug Gillins says the health and safety of athletes and university community members must take priority, adding: “While we share in the disappointment of everyone who has worked hard to prepare for this football game, we have known there will be challenges to maintaining the athletics calendar.”

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