Summit League announces return plan for fall sports

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Jack Hoover
SPORTS EDITOR

Omaha men’s soccer players (in white) in a game against Michigan (in blue). Photo by Timothy Eaves.

Fall sports at UNO didn’t get the season they wanted this year.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the seasons for men’s soccer, women’s soccer and volleyball were all put on hiatus. For student-athletes looking to play the sports they loved, all they had to do now was wait and see when they would play again.

Now they know.

On Oct. 28, the Summit League announced the outlook for fall sports teams that missed out on their season. Soccer and volleyball will now, at least for this year, be spring sports.

Men’s soccer, women’s soccer and volleyball will all be coming back with new looks in the spring.

There will be no non-conference games for any of the teams at the moment, as currently, the plan is for only league games. Volleyball and women’s soccer will partake in a 16 game season,  . The volleyball season will start on Jan. 31, while the women’s soccer schedule will kick off on Feb.12 with the men’s team starting the next day.

The Maverick teams will play every team in the Summit League twice, with both games against a team taking place at the same site. For example, UNO women’s soccer will open their season playing South Dakota State at home on Feb 12. The Mavericks will then take on the Jackrabbits again at home on Feb. 14.

The men’s soccer schedule will look the most different and will perhaps be the most meaningful of all revised schedules. While women’s soccer and volleyball will culminate their season with a postseason tournament, the Summit League council has opted instead to give the winner of the regular-season title the automatic berth to the NCAA tournament. With only a 10 game season, every match will matter for Maverick men’s soccer.

Of note for Maverick athletics is the destination of the women’s Summit League championship. Normally the previous season’s winner earns the right to host, but given the circumstances, Omaha (and Al. F Caniglia Field) will be the sight of the 2020/2021 Summit League championship. Denver, who won last season’s title, will retain the right to host in 2021.

Omaha women’s soccer will have work to do if they want to defend their home turf. As per usual, the top four teams in the conference will make the championship. Last season, the Mavericks just missed out as they finished eighth in the conference.

In order to make their impact, men’s and women’s soccer will have plenty of time to put in work as the long off season continues. At least now there is a return date to look forward to.

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