NEW BRITAIN, Conn. (WTNH) – Governor Ned Lamont and the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference (CIAC) encouraged high school athletes to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

On Tuesday at 2 p.m., Lamont and CIAC held a news conference at Veterans Stadium in New Britain.

The message to student-athletes from the CIAC at Tuesday’s event was “stay in the game.” High school athletes are being encouraged to get vaccinated against COVID-19 to slow the spread of the virus.

The COVID vaccinations are an important issue for New Haven’s Hillhouse High School football Coach Reggie Lytle. He tells News 8 their number one priority is for his team to stay healthy and encourages his players to get the vaccine. At this point, about 60 percent of his team is not vaccinated for COVID.

“They’re a little numb to it,” Coach Lytle explained. “It hasn’t affected every family. They don’t really know the effects. It hasn’t affected every family and maybe some parents kept it away from them, but it’s something that’s serious. I take it seriously. My coaches staff, take it seriously.”

He says his motto is “Let’s stay on the field.” And he believes getting the team vaccinated will help with that.

RELATED: CIAC releases COVID guidelines for Fall 2021 school sports

WEB EXTRA: Full announcement from Gov. Lamont, CIAC

Also at this event, the governor announced students K-12 will be required to wear masks in school again this year. Tuesday, too, the state’s COVID positivity rate climbed over four percent for the first time in months.

Watch the full announcement in the video above.