Starting with Friday evening contests, any athletes in NCHSAA-sponsored games won't be required to wear masks on the field.

The masks are coming off for many high school athletes in North Carolina. 

The N.C. High School Athletic Association announced on Twitter on Thursday that masks will be optional for outdoor sports participants, beginning 5 p.m. Friday. This decision includes players and officials actively participating in competition. Coaches and players on the bench who are not actively participating and cannot socially distance should still wear a mask, according to the NCHSAA. 

On Wednesday, Gov. Roy Cooper announced that people no longer will be required to wear masks outdoors in North Carolina, part of a new executive order that eases restrictions meant to slow the spread of COVID-19. 

There are still 10 sports ongoing this school year, with just one recognized as an indoor sport. However, wrestling athletes don’t need to wear masks upon entering the mat for a match. They are required to wear masks at all other times and during practice.