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Rose alumni  and college athletes resume workouts on campus

FRI. | 10-02-20 | SPORTS

     The first cancellation of sports in March due to the outbreak of COVID-19  flipped the college sports world upside down, causing long lasting effects, such as the implementation of social distancing, the major decrease of fan attendance at all sporting events, the extreme use of sanitation on all equipment and facilities and even the new use of technology that identifies contract-tracing daily for athletes while inside their facilities. Half a year later, college athletics are finding a new normal with the restrictions implemented to accommodate the virus. A majority of schools are slowly bringing back football, with limited to no seating available to fans. However, other fall sports such as cross country, men’s soccer,  women’s volleyball and even football, depending on the college’s conference regulations, have been cancelled for the year. Sports in the winter and spring are doing their best to keep their heads high and start to  prepare for an unpromised season.

     Rose alumni and freshman pitcher at Chowan University Shane Rademacher is one of almost half a million college athletes who had their seasons stripped away from them, but will be able to return this season, although under a new preseason routine.

    “Because of the new restrictions, our preseason has been broken down into phases, there are four total,” Rademacher said.


Graphic by Jackson Surles

“Right now we are in phase one, the locker room and gym is closed unless a player needs to go to the athletic trainer, and we are only allowed to workout and practice together in small groups.”

     Rademacher is hopeful and has high expectations for the season ahead of him in the spring, despite the unorthodox fall his team is undergoing.    

     “I’m super excited; it’s clear my teammates and I have grown a lot skillfully, and we're ready to see what we can do as a team, and I’m ready to see what I can do individually in a full season this spring if we are given the privilege to play,” Rademacher said.

     While Rademacher is preparing for a season that will come in the spring, ECU junior Ammah Abdel-Rahman, also a former Rampant, and now junior cross country, and outdoor track runner at East Carolina is dealing with circumstances that are a bit different. Her cross country season has been cancelled, so she will be approaching this fall differently than she has had to before.

     “We are just using this time to get mentally and physically stronger, we have already had this happen to us in March when our track season was taken away from us,” Abdel-Rahman said.    “ We are trying to make a point to turn this into a positive and see it as an opportunity to get better together as a team mentally and physically.”

     As a junior this year, Abdel-Rahman knows that her responsibility on the team has increased.

     “At the end of the day, just have fun because COVID-19 has taken so much away from us,  but here we are able to have our team together and train with them doing something we all love, so I’m just telling myself to enjoy it and be grateful that I’m still able to do it,” Abdel-Rahman said.

     Even with the amount of tremendous difficult changes to the sports seasons that will be played this year, and many adaptations will have to be made. Through the passion of coaches, athletes and fans, sports will continue on through 2020 with possibly more excitement than ever before.

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