The James J. Fitzpatrick Trophy awards banquet scheduled for Sunday in Portland has been postponed due to COVID-19 concerns.

The banquet honors the state’s top high school senior football player each year.

This year’s finalists are Thomas Horton, a lineman from Bonny Eagle High School in Standish, and quarterbacks Will Ledbetter of Windham and Caden McDuffie of Cape Elizabeth.

Committee Chair Jack Dawson announced the decision to postpone the banquet Tuesday evening.

“With [Tuesday] morning’s news that many schools are reverting to remote instruction and messages from several individuals that the current spike in COVID-19 infections has influenced their decisions to stay clear of all kinds of public activity, we have reluctantly decided to follow suit,” Dawson said in an email.

Dawson said the committee hopes to find a suitable date to reschedule the banquet in early March.

This year’s recipient will be the 50th in the award’s history since its inception in 1971. No trophy was awarded last year because the 2020 high school tackle football season was canceled due to the coronavirus.

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Ernie Clark

Ernie Clark is a veteran sportswriter who has worked with the Bangor Daily News for more than a decade. A four-time Maine Sportswriter of the Year as selected by the National Sportscasters and Sportswriters...