Plymouth State’s Alessia Salzillo, right, and Colby’s Chiamaka Ubani battle for a loose ball during women’s basketball action Dec. 6 in Waterville. Rich Abrahamson/Morning Sentinel


The New England Small College Athletic Conference — which includes Colby College of Waterville, Bowdoin College of Brunswick and Bates College of Lewiston — made changes to its spectator policy for athletic events on Wednesday.

In a statement on the conference’s website, indoor athletic events will be restricted to students/personnel of the host school only.

“In light of the rapid onset of the highly transmissible Omicron variant, NESCAC institutions will temporarily require that spectators at indoor NESCAC athletic events be restricted to individuals who are part of the host institution’s testing protocol,”  the statement said. “This policy is in effect until the end of January.”

Before Wednesday’s announcement, the NESCAC left decisions of the spectator and tailgating policies to the individual schools within the conference. Bowdoin and Bates allowed fully vaccinated spectators ages 12 and older to attend indoor events, with proof of vaccination. Spectators were also required to wear masks. Colby followed similar guidelines, with fans required to mask.

Teams within the NESCAC are currently on holiday break. Basketball returns on Tuesday, when the Amherst men’s basketball team travels to SUNY Old Westbury in Old Westbury, New York. On that same day, the Amherst women’s basketball team will play Whittier College in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Hockey returns from break on Dec. 31, when the Babson men’s hockey team hosts Trinity in Babson Park, Massachusetts. Women’s hockey returns Jan. 1, when Williams hosts Bowdoin in Williamstown, Massachusetts.

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