No. 22 Syracuse halts season after positive COVID-19 test, joining men's team on pause

·2 min read
Quentin Hillsman in dismay.
The Syracuse women's basketball team, shown here before the pandemic, is on pause due to a positive test. (Kevin Light/Getty Images)

The No. 22-ranked Syracuse women’s basketball team has halted its season and joins its men’s team on pause as both deal with positive COVID-19 tests near the programs.

The Orange (5-1) announced on Sunday that they had a positive test within the women’s program and are undergoing contract tracing. Their game Monday night at home against Morgan State has been canceled. Syracuse’s next contest is scheduled for Thursday afternoon against North Carolina at the Dome.

Syracuse men on third COVID-19 pause

The men’s team put its program on pause six days ago for the third time in six weeks. It announced it would halt all activities two days after playing Buffalo at home. An unnamed Bulls player tested positive for COVID-19 and the Buffalo program is also on pause.

The Orange (6-1) had to postpone a game against Notre Dame last week and their game against Wake Forest scheduled for this Wednesday.

Syracuse has had some of the worst struggles in NCAA Division I men’s basketball due to the coronavirus. Coach Jim Boeheim and a player tested positive in mid-November, causing a pause in activities for two weeks. They had a three-day pause in late November when a different player tested positive.

Onondaga County experienced its deadliest week of the pandemic during the week of Christmas. The daily positivity rate for the county is 3.6 percent and its seven-day positive average is 5.5 percent, county officials said on Sunday. World Health Organization guidelines suggest areas try to be below 5 percent.

NCAA teams on pause due to COVID-19

The Ole Miss women’s program announced Sunday it would also pause activities “due to a combination of positive tests, contact tracing and subsequent quarantining of individuals.” It was scheduled to play No. 5 South Carolina on New Year’s Eve in the SEC opener for both teams.

Vanderbilt’s scheduled game against Samford on Monday will also be rescheduled due to COVID-19-related circumstances.

On the men’s side, Villanova is temporarily shutting down its season after coach Jay Wright and another member of the team staff tested positive for the coronavirus.

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