NECC Observer

The student news website of Northern Essex Community College, Haverhill and Lawrence, Mass.

Pandemic impacts fall sports schedule

The fall sports season looks different this year for NECC’s athletes, coaches and fans.

Cross country and esports are participating in regular activities this fall but other sports have had their seasons adjusted or moved because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

 In the fall semester, all of the NECC’s athletic programs will be permitted to practice and hold their non-traditional seasons, while only the cross country and esports teams will participate in regular season competition,” according to the NECC Knights website.

” The men’s soccer and women’s volleyball regular seasons have been shifted to the spring semester. The start of competition in basketball will also be delayed to January,” according to the website.

With the news of all the sports coming back eventually, athletes can now prepare themselves for a resurgence of sports. 

With COVID still around the athletic department is following strict guidelines with sports coming back to play in which to keep the coaches and players as safe as possible. 

As a department we are following specific guidelines for masks, disinfectant, sanitizers and other PPE. We purchased a couple of small disinfecting machines that assist us with sanitizing. We’re following recommendations of the national governing body and the U.S. Council for Athletes Health,” said NECC Athletic director Dan Blair. 

With how important sports are to athletes the athletic department is doing what they can for the athletes to be able to play. Besides esports and cross country the other sports will be allowed to practice or take part in their non-traditional season during the fall semester. 

Northern Essex Community College competes as a member of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) and sponsors 12 varsity intercollegiate sports including baseball, men’s basketball, women’s basketball, softball, women’s volleyball, men’s and women’s cross country, men’s soccer, Esports and men’s and women’s track and field. For more information on Northern Essex Community College Athletics please visit the official website of Northern Essex Athletics ( If there are any questions about sports, in what will happen or in need of anything alongside that you can contact the Director of Athletics, Dan Blair at (