Franklin Countys First News

UMF announces plans for return of winter sports

UMF announced that winter sports will be returning on Jan. 11.

FARMINGTON — Officials with the University of Maine at Farmington announced Wednesday that they plan to bring back winter sports teams, which consist of men's and women's basketball, snowsports (alpine, nordic, freeski/ride & snowboard), indoor track and field on Jan. 11. All student-athletes participating in winter sports will comply with return to campus testing and athletic activity safety protocols.

"The wellbeing of our student-athletes, staff, our campus, and the community at large is our number one priority, and all decisions and plans are made with that in mind," said UMF President Edward Serna. "Our Athletics Department has worked incredibly hard this fall to follow health and safety protocol so that teams could practice and train with the ultimate goal of providing a quality educational and developmental experience."

"We are keenly aware of the impact on our student-athletes and staff and the challenges they have faced navigating the losses of traditional competitive seasons last spring and this fall," said UMF Director of Athletics, Fitness, and Recreation Julie Davis. "At the same time, I couldn't be more proud of them for all their patience, creativity, and hard work to make the most of what we felt was in everyone's best interest. No decision was made lightly, and ultimately, everything we did was centered around student experience, and aimed at developing and supporting them holistically. They embraced this and mirrored it back with great resilience and gratitude."

The UMF Athletics Action Team, comprised of health, coaching, facilities, and administrative professionals, continues to navigate the changing landscape with guarded optimism, and plans for a limited competitive season in the coming months, beginning as early as February.

Looking ahead to spring sports, contingency plans and assessments are underway and will evolve as more information becomes available. The North Atlantic Conference (NAC) is working to develop a variety of schedule models that would best serve its member institutions. UMF sponsors Baseball, Women's Lacrosse, Softball, and Men's and Women's Track and Field as spring sports. Additionally, earlier this year the NAC approved moving some conference play for golf to spring 2021.

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