The University of the Fraser Valley women’s and men’s basketball teams will play fewer games and travel a lot less under a plan revealed by the Canada West conference Monday.
The CW board of directors approved revised formats for several sports after more than a month of committee work.
According to the news release, “the revised formats will also allow for competition to occur in a condensed period of time should COVID-19 restrictions limit, but not eliminate the amount of time available to complete the 2020-21 season.”
For the UFV women’s b-ball team that includes Chilliwack’s Deanna Tuchscherer and Sydney Fraess, and the men’s squad that now includes Zach and Matthias Klim, that means not leaving B.C. for games this fall. The Cascades will be placed in a seven-team B.C. division with the University of British Columbia, University of Victoria, University of Northern B.C., Thompson Rivers University, Trinity Western University and UBC Okanagan. They’ll play three games against four of those rivals and six games against two of those foes for a total of 16.
They normally play 20 and they normally head out of province to face opponents in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba.
Canada West leadership cited health and safety along with financial viability as driving forces.
The new formats will be in place for a one-year period and revisited prior to the 2021-22 season.
“While there remains uncertainty around when university sport will return, the CW board of directors has worked diligently to ensure that when it does, the conference and our members are prepared to navigate the difficult financial realities ahead of us,” said CW president Clint Hamilton. “The revised sport formats reflect the financial constraints our members will find themselves in as both a direct and indirect result of COVID-19. We remain hopeful that we will be able to compete during the 2020-21 season and deliver an excellent university sport experience for our student-athletes.”
Nothing will go ahead until health authorities in all four provinces give the green light for athletic competition to resume.
Playoff formats, along with conference regular season schedules, will be released at a later date.