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NESCAC cancels winter sports season amid concerns over COVID-19 pandemic

The Tufts University women's basketball team captured the regular season title in the NESCAC last season.SportsPix

There will be no winter sports season for the New England Small Collegiate Athletic Conference, the schools' presidents announced on Thursday. The decision was made as the colleges and universities continue to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to a statement, many of the schools' students will not return for spring semester until late January or early February, which would not “allow enough time to conduct meaningful conference play.”

The sports affected are basketball, hockey, squash, and swimming and diving. The statement left open the possibility that schools could try to play nonconference games.

“We understand this decision will disappoint many of our students, given the important role athletics plays in the student experience,” the statement read. “We remain committed to providing meaningful opportunities for our students to engage in athletic activities. Students may continue to participate in practice activities, strength and conditioning, skill development, and leadership programming in accordance with NCAA, Conference, and institutional policies, as well as state and local health guidelines. Institutions may schedule outside competition at their discretion.”


On July 10, the NESCAC canceled its fall sports season.

The NESCAC consists of Amherst, Bates, Bowdoin, Colby, Connecticut College, Hamilton, Middlebury, Trinity, Tufts, Wesleyan, and Williams.

Follow Andrew Mahoney on Twitter @GlobeMahoney.