Due to the recent rise of COVID-19 cases in Los Angeles County, the Cal Poly Pomona Department of Intercollegiate Athletics has updated its spectator policy with efforts to reduce the amount of people gathered at sports events.
The spectator policy that was previously established last semester allowed fall sports to have spectators if COVID-19 guidelines were being followed. These guidelines included, wearing masks properly and social distancing, as well as completing the CPP Health Screener. The updated policy is still implementing these guidelines but includes a policy that states each coach and individual player on both home and visiting teams are given a four person pass list. Both players and coaches are required to provide the names of those on their pass list hours before each game.
Athletics Director Brian Swanson assures everyone, including the visiting teams, have been cooperating with the spectator policy as well as the COVID-19 guidelines throughout the few games they have been able to host.
“So far I circled the gym a couple times last week and people were very respectful, and they would put their mask back on if they were eating or if they would forget and we asked them to, but we haven’t had any incident against that,” said Swanson.
Due to the limited number of spectators per player, the women’s basketball team has been helping one another by giving their pass list spots to those who have local families coming to each home game.
Senior guard for CPP women’s basketball team, Ally Bates explained how she shares her tickets to teammates with more than four family members.
“I’m from Australia so I don’t have any family at games,” said Bates. “I have a few friends that can come but I can get them on the pass list so I never have any issues with not having enough tickets, but I know for people like Chynna, Monica or Jayda, they have bigger families, so usually we’re sending our tickets to them so that they can get as many family members into games if possible.”
According to CCAA regulations, any game canceled due to COVID-19 will no longer affect either team’s standings and will be marked as “No Contest” for spring sports. So far, the women’s basketball team has had two no contest matches.
Bates and her teammate Sydney Fedinec agree their focus is not on who is in the crowd this year but on playing together as a team and trying to get a win.
Women’s basketball head coach Danelle Bishop expressed after 12 seasons with the team, playing during COVID felt very different.
“I have peers that I work with across the country, whether they’d be in Texas or Missouri and we’re in COVID but they’re packing their gyms out and they don’t even require masks so it’s different for all of us out here in California,” said Bates.
The spectator policy is subject to change. Swanson informed that the Athletics Department would begin to reevaluate the policy after the three-week switch to virtual instruction in order to see how games after Feb. 17 will be affected and if the policy requires any adjustments.
“It was tough sitting out last year, especially knowing that there were other people across the country playing,” said Bishop. “Right now, we’re just dealing with the time, It’s unfortunate we had to have few games canceled but it is what it is and if that’s what keeps us all safe and healthy then that’s what we have to do.”
To livestream any of the Cal Poly Pomona Spring 2022 sports games, visit the CCAA Network.