BC Athletes Anticipate Upcoming 2021 Season

Dean Barker, Leyton Pullin, and Zachary Gray

Bridgewater, Va. – Bridgewater College athletics are just around the corner in the winter of 2021.

In November, the ODAC announced that sports would be set to resume in January. Due to the coronavirus, the spring season was cut short, and the fall and winter seasons had been in question. While many teams will be playing at once, the Eagles are happy to be back on the field of play.

“I’m excited for the upcoming season and to have hopefully the whole team back; I feel like they have been very safe,” said sophomore women’s tennis player Ali Keister. Keister had a 6-2 singles record and was an All ODAC Academic before the spring season was shut down.

After an undefeated regular season and an ODAC Championship, sophomore football player Kyle Starret is looking forward to defending their title.

“I think we’re ready to go in and compete again in the spring, and it just feels good knowing game days are just around the corner,” said Starret.

While there is excitement in the air, there is still a sense of caution that some student athletes have. Sophomore women’s lacrosse player Allison Burris expressed her concerns over playing with the virus still out there.

“[I’m] a little nervous, but very excited to get back into things nonetheless. I will be interested to see if we have to play games with masks on,” said Burris. 

One of the biggest adjustments to practice this fall was following all the new COVID procedures. While it was difficult, the athletes appreciated the measures taken to keep them safe.

“Although it hasn’t been easy practicing in small pods, especially in a sport where having all the different parts effectively work together is important, the school has made it work and has allowed us to get better as a team without putting anyone in serious risk,” said Starret. 

“The phases seem to have been very effective,” said Keister. “Between wearing masks for contact play and in the weight room, I feel as though Bridgewater has made returning to our sports a mostly smooth and, most importantly, safe process.”

Starret emphasized how the cooperation of everyone involved helped to make the process smooth.

“The athletic trainers and coaches have really shown that they care through this whole process,” said Starret. “Now we’ve finally gotten to the point where we can practice as a team, and I think the trainers and the protocols they’ve put in place have a lot to do with that.”

Despite the measures, Burris felt that the school could do more protective work.

“I think they try and prevent the spread well, and it has shown to work the past few weeks, but I think there is more we could do to help,” said Burris. 

Games will begin on Jan. 23rd, with men’s and women’s basketball tipping off. Not all sports will be played at the same time as their fellow fall/winter teams. The spring season has yet to be determined.