Central Carolina Community College cancels fall athletics

Posted 7/15/20

Central Carolina Community College has canceled its fall sports season in reaction to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the school said in Tuesday morning release.

The Cougars’ decision came a …

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Central Carolina Community College cancels fall athletics

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Posted

Central Carolina Community College has canceled its fall sports season in reaction to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the school said in Tuesday morning release.

The Cougars’ decision came a day after the National Junior College Athletic Association, the organization under which they compete, announced that “a majority of competition” will be moved to the spring.

“While we are very disappointed that we will not be able to compete in the fall season, we will always put the health and safety of our student-athletes and coaches as our top priority,” athletic director Jonathan Hockaday said in the release. “We feel that this is the best decision for our student-athletes during this unprecedented time with COVID-19.”

At CCCC, men’s and women’s cross country athletes will be most affected — the school will not field a cross country team for the upcoming school year. The NJCAA said Monday that cross country, half-marathon running and women’s tennis (all low-contact sports) could continue in the fall. But Hockaday said the CCCC administration and athletic department “just did not feel comfortable putting our student-athletes at that risk” in the coming months.

“It was a difficult decision about cross country,” Hockaday told the News + Record. “We hated to do it to our student athletes who committed to come here, but there was concern from the coaches on what all would be plausible for us to do.”

Volleyball, CCCC’s other fall sport, will move to fall competition. The men’s golf team will not compete in any fall tournaments (just the spring), and the men’s and women’s basketball teams — which usually begin playing in the late fall — are planning to start their seasons in January, in accordance with NJCAA guidelines.

CCCC, which has campuses in Chatham, Lee and Harnett counties, is planning to begin its 2020-21 academic year as scheduled on Aug. 17. The school will provide a mix of online and in-person instruction with “appropriate measures in place for classroom and personal safety.”

“It’s difficult,” Hockaday said of the decision to cancel fall sports. “But we’ve got to do what’s best for the college and student-athletes as a whole.”

Reporter Chapel Fowler can be reached at cfowler@chathamnr.com or on Twitter at @chapelfowler.

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