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Big South cancels spring sports

The Big South Conference announced in a Wednesday afternoon, March 18, press release that it was canceling all regular-season competition, conference championships and athletics activities that are required or that include coach involvement through the remainder of the 2019-20 season.

The release noted the cancellation is due to the ongoing concerns surrounding the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

The decision was made by the league’s Council of Chief Executive Officers in consultation with the Council of Athletics Directors to protect the health and well-being of student-athletes, coaches, staff and fans, the release stated.

“In the event a member institution reopens for the 2020 spring semester and conducts in-person, on-campus classes, any permissible athletics activities, as defined by NCAA regulations, with the exception of competition, will be at the discretion of that institution,” officials stated in the release. “Each institution will continue to work in accordance with its respective university and state policies related to its individual campus decisions.”

The release concluded by noting that Big South Commissioner Kyle Kallander will be releasing a statement to all Big South student-athletes in the near future.

The cancellation means Longwood University’s softball team will not be able to defend its Big South regular-season and tournament championships this year. The Lancers had won five of their last six games to conclude with an overall record of 10-11 for 2020.

When postponements began March 12, they had 33 games remaining on their regular season schedule.

The Lancers women’s tennis squad ended up at 7-3, with 11 matches remaining.

The Longwood men’s tennis team finished at 7-5. Nine matches remained.

There were nine matches left to play for the Longwood women’s lacrosse team, which finished at 3-5.

Longwood’s baseball team went 4-13 overall, with 37 games left to play.

Longwood’s women’s golf team still had four events to play, including the Big South Conference Tournament, and the men’s golf team had three events left on the schedule, including the Big South Championships.

Three events each remained for Longwood’s women’s and men’s cross country teams.

A Longwood Athletics press release noted that the Big South’s announcement is the latest in a series of nationwide postponements and cancellations of athletics activities and competitions by institutions at all levels of college athletics.

Longwood announced March 13 that it would move all classes and assignments to a fully online format through March 27, officials stated in the release. The Longwood campus remains open, though students are not required to remain on campus.