Monday, August 3, 2020

GLVC postpones soccer, volleyball seasons

The University of Illinois Springfield’s soccer and volleyball seasons have been postponed until the second semester due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The Great Lakes Valley Conference’s Council of Presidents voted to postpone the majority of its fall sports “based on guidance from the league’s athletics directors and an extensive review of the recommended testing and safety measures developed by the NCAA Sports Science Institute,” according to the GLVC’s announcement on Monday.

Football was also postponed in the GLVC. Each of the fall sports affected — football, men’s and women’s soccer and volleyball — were determined high risk by the NCAA Sport Science Institute, based on a consensus by the NCAA COVID-19 Advisory Panel and the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine COVID-19 Working Group.

Student-athletes may still train outside of the playing season beginning Sept. 7 or on the fourth day of classes for the fall term under the NCAA’s countable athletic related activities (CARA) rules.

UIS athletic director Peyton Deterding, who started his first day on Dec. 9, said student-athletes are expected to arrive on campus with the rest of the student body on Aug. 24.

“We are looking at ways to still provide meaningful opportunities for student-athletes and one of those is they come back to campus,” Deterding said. “Obviously some have been away from their sport for a little bit of time, so we’re looking for ways to continue with practices and strength and conditioning in a safe environment. If we can do it in a safe environment, it allows us to build some team camaraderie and team unity and get them back to playing sports.”

UIS’ opening soccer games were scheduled Sept. 6, after their schedules — featuring only conference games — were released in June. The UIS volleyball team was also set to open the year Sept. 3.

Cross country, however, was determined medium risk and will still be permitted to compete this fall with the GLVC meet scheduled for Oct. 24. The UIS cross country teams are slated to begin with a home meet Sept. 4 but that may change, according to Deterding.

Golf and tennis, each judged low risk, will also be allowed to compete in their non-championship segments in the fall and continue their season into the spring when their respective championship seasons begin.

Baseball and softball — considered medium risk — will be permitted to have only intrasquad competition on campus in the fall.

The GLVC said in its press release that it has established Oct. 1 as the deadline to determine the competition start date for men’s and women’s basketball, each considered high risk.

This article appeared in The State Journal-Register on July 27, 2020.