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ODAC cancels remainder of spring sports season

The Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) announced Friday afternoon, March 20, that it had made the decision to cancel the remainder of the 2019-20 conference athletic campaign amid the growing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and its continued effect on decisions made on campuses as well as throughout the region.

The release noted the cancellation includes all regular season league play as well as ODAC postseason and championship competition.

Hampden-Sydney College (H-SC) is a member of the ODAC.

The ODAC announcement stated the cancellation decision was made via unanimous vote from the conference’s presidents council and board of directors.

Per its March 13 announcement, the ODAC’s leadership remained in close communication as it monitored the evolving landscape, the March 20 release stated.

“While this choice definitively closes the ODAC portion of all athletic schedules, each member school still maintains autonomy over practice schedules and non-conference competition,” officials said in the release.

As of Friday, March 20, Hampden-Sydney listed every athletic event for the remainder of the spring season as canceled.

The Tigers baseball team was off to an outstanding start this year, and its final record for 2020 is 12-4 overall, including a 2-0 run in the ODAC. When cancellations began March 13, the team had 23 games remaining on its regular-season schedule.

The H-SC lacrosse team had 11 matches remaining on its regular-season schedule. The squad finished with an overall record of 4-2, including a 1-0 mark in the ODAC.

In tennis, the Tigers had 10 matches left on their regular-season schedule. They ended up 3-6 this spring, finishing with a 9-0 win over Wabash College March 12.

Hampden-Sydney’s golf team had five events remaining on its schedule, including the ODAC Championships and the NCAA Division III Men’s Golf Championships. The Tigers finished the 2019-20 season with three top-3 finishes, including a win at the Oglethorpe-Royal Lakes Fall Invitational in October.

The new distance track program at H-SC had four events remaining on its schedule, including the ODAC Outdoor Championships.

“To all the ODAC student-athletes, coaches, institutional staff and fans, know that this decision did not come lightly,” officials said in the March 20 release. “The conference had remained hopeful for competition to resume this spring, but due to the rapidly evolving situation with COVID-19, the ODAC is prioritizing the health and well-being of not only those in ODAC and member school circles but respective local communities by encouraging social distancing.”

The release noted that the ODAC looks forward to showcasing the achievements of its spring sports athletes over the next few weeks.

“Stay tuned for content about our spring-sport seniors, end-of-season awards for those sports and other features highlighting the 2019-20 athletic campaign,” officials stated in the release.