MANSFIELD, Mass. – The Adelphi University men’s and women’s soccer teams will have to wait until the spring at the earliest to compete again.

That’s because the Council of Presidents of the Northeast-10 Conference voted unanimously on Thursday to suspend all NE10-sponsored competition and championships through Dec. 31 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a press release, the NE10 said that it “considers the health and safety of its student-athletes, coaches, administrators, staff and wider campus communities to be of paramount importance. Despite each institutions’ planning over the past few months and the conference’s collective efforts to forge a path forward, it has become clear that we are not able to conduct outside competition at this time in a manner that is consistent with the prioritization of our campus’ collective well-being.”

The conference and its member schools are striving to ensure a regular season and conference championship experience for its fall sport student-athletes during the Spring 2021 semester, as long as a return to competition can be safely executed. Initial plans for spring competition fall sports will be provided at a later date.

“The Northeast-10 Conference Council of Presidents is united in its commitment to supporting local and state efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19. Campus resocialization guidelines – including restrictions on student and staff travel, social distancing requirements and limits on group gatherings, are being undertaken so that campuses can support in-person engagement and education,” the Council of Presidents said in a statement. “Aiding our member campuses in their reopening efforts is critical and while athletics is an integral part of campus life, nothing is more important than the health and well-being of our NE10 community, including our student-athletes, staff and our towns and cities. As such, we have made the difficult decision that intercollegiate athletics competition has been suspended through the end of the 2020 fall semester. We are committed to exploring alternate playing seasons for our fall sports during the 2020-21 academic year, if it is deemed safe. We do not take this decision lightly and understand its impact. Our campus communities will do everything we can to support the well-being of our student-athletes this fall as we navigate these uncertain times together.”

The reaction of Adelphi officials ranged from disappointment to understanding.

“It was a heartbreaking decision to have to make — to delay our student-athletes’ play and competition further, especially knowing what they have sacrificed already,” Adelphi University president Dr. Christine Riordan said in a statement. “My fellow NE10 Conference presidents and I have prioritized our athletes’ safety, keeping their education and well-being at the heart of our work. As the mother of a college athlete myself, I appreciate the full range of emotions that our student-athletes and their families are experiencing.”

The NE10 and its member institutions are striving to ensure a meaningful regular season and conference championship experience for its fall sport student-athletes during the Spring 2021 semester, as long as a return to competition can be safely executed. Initial plans for spring competition fall sports will be provided at a later date.

Added Adelphi director of athletics and campus recreation Danny McCabe: “This decision was made with a great deal of thought and discussion using the most relevant information on COVID-19.

“It is very difficult to, once again, stop competitions as that is what we prepare for, as athletes, every season. However, the safety of our student-athletes and staff is our first priority. We will eventually return to competition and we plan to do so stronger than ever. In the meantime, we are committed to providing the best possible student-athlete experience in the safest manner.”

NE10 Council of Presidents

Christine Riordan, Adelphi University
Vince Maniaci, American International College
Francesco Cesareo, Assumption University
Paul Condrin, Bentley University
Kim Mooney, Franklin Pierce University
Linda LeMura, Le Moyne College
Steve Kaplan, University of New Haven
Marvin Krislov, Pace University
Joe Favazza, Saint Anselm College
Lorraine Sterritt, Saint Michael’s College
Marcia White, The College of Saint Rose
Joe Bertolino, Southern Connecticut State University
Wil Zemp, Southern New Hampshire University
John Denning, Stonehill College