Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, a Liberty League opponent of Clarkson and St. Lawrence universities, announced Tuesday that it would not participate in fall sports in the upcoming semester.
RPI, based in Troy, made the announcement as part of its “return to campus operations plan,” stating that the health-and-safety plans put in effect to limit spread of COVID-19 create a “significant impact on intercollegiate athletes in the fall 2020 semester.”
RPI, an NCAA Division III school in all fall sports, canceled seasons for football, men’s and women’s soccer, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s and women’s tennis, field hockey and golf.
Clarkson and St. Lawrence annually play RPI in league games in soccer, cross country and golf. St. Lawrence also plays RPI in football and field hockey.
Neither Clarkson nor St. Lawrence have announced any changes to its fall sports schedule, although St. Lawrence, in its return-to-campus plan announced last week, said that if athletics are permitted it anticipated a compressed schedule that would begin in late September or early October.
“Athletics practices and competitions are expected to occur,” SLU said in the release, “but we are waiting for guidance from the NCAA and leagues, in addition to (New York State) about the precise format.”
RPI’s plans come after the recent announcement by New England Small College Athletic Conference schools Bowdoin College and Williams College that they would skip the fall season while implementing coronavirus-related healthy-and-safety plans. Grinnell College, a Division III school in Iowa, and Morehouse College, a Division II school in Atlanta, have also announced the canceling of fall sports for 2020.
RPI said it expects fall teams to be able to continue to practice with coaches and strength-and-conditioning staff. It said it planned to ask the NCAA for a waiver on affected fall athletes as practicing automatically triggers a season of eligibility under NCAA rules.
RPI said no decision has been made about winter sports. Clarkson and St. Lawrence each play RPI in NCAA Division I men’s and women’s hockey in the ECAC Hockey conference. Clarkson’s first scheduled ECAC Hockey conference game next season is Nov. 6 at RPI in Troy. St. Lawrence has not announced its hockey schedule yet but as a traditional traveling partner with Clarkson, it would face RPI on Nov. 7 in Troy.
NAC AWARDS ADAMS
Sydney Adams, a volleyball player at Maine Maritime Academy, was named Tuesday the North Atlantic Conference Woman of the Year, topping SUNY Canton’s Molly Denny and six other nominees for the prestigious award.
The honor is given to graduating athletes who distinguished themselves in academics, athletics, service and leadership. Adams is the first athlete from Maine Maritime to win the award.
Denny, a former South Jefferson athlete, was one of eight nominees for the honor. She graduated in May as the third all-time leading points scorer in SUNY Canton women’s lacrosse history.
CLARKSON, SLU PLAYERS HONORED
Five men’s lacrosse players from Clarkson and St. Lawrence were honored late last week as United States Intercollegiate Lacrosse Association Division III Scholar All-Americans.
Clarkson seniors Derek Beatty, Pierce Currie and Liam St. Croix won the honor while seniors Mike Donnelly and Alex Terry received the award for St. Lawrence.
Beattie, from Westford, Mass., Currie, from Webster, and St. Croix, from Camillus, each played in at least three games in the coronavirus-shortened season for the Golden Knights. St. Croix was named Clarkson’s Most Valuable Player.
Donnelly, from Mansfield, Mass., supplied six goals and nine assists for St. Lawrence. Terry, from Hopkinton, Mass., made all three starts in goal for the Saints.
The USILA-Warrior Scholar All-America award honors senior athletes who have excelled academically with at least a 3.0 grade-point average and has practiced good citizenship.