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SUNYAC cancels winter sports

SYRACUSE — In an abundance of caution to protect the health and safety of students and staff, after consultation with conference leadership, the presidents of the State University of New York Athletic Conference have made the difficult decision to cancel winter sports.

“This was not an easy decision and I empathize with all of our student-athletes across the SUNYAC,” said Erik Bitterbaum, chair of the SUNYAC presidents. “However, despite our best efforts to plan for a winter season, our priority must be the health and safety of everyone involved with intercollegiate athletics, and our campuses as a whole.”

The winter sports impacted by the decision include the conference schedules and championships for men’s and women’s basketball as well as men’s ice hockey. The championships for men’s and women’s swimming & diving and men’s and women’s indoor track & field also have been canceled.

The SUNYAC will continue internal planning for the possibility of spring sports. The decision on spring sports will be made at a future date.

“We realize this is a tremendous disappointment for Fredonia’s student-athletes, their families, coaches, and staff and all who support Blue Devils athletics. The campus administration has approved for Blue Devil student-athletes to continue with practices to the extent possible and as long as each team continues to adhere to the safety and health expectations and protocols established by SUNY Fredonia and the Department of Athletics,” Fredonia State said in a statement Monday afternoon. “We are doing this to keep student-athletes engaged with their teammates and the sport they love. Again, all this will be done within established health and safety expectations. Accordingly, we are moving forward with plans to open the natatorium and ice arena for our intercollegiate teams to practice. The natatorium and ice arena will not be available for other students, staff, or the public for the remainder of the semester. A decision on the availability of those venues for the spring semester will be made at a later date.”

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