GNAC Moves Forward With Spring Seasons, Championships

Thursday, February 18, 2021

PORTLAND, Ore. – The Great Northwest Athletic Conference plans to move forward with conference schedules for baseball and softball and affirmed its commitment to conducting spring sports championships in decisions made by the conference’s Management Council and approved by the CEO Board on Thursday.

The GNAC plans to conduct a full 2021 baseball schedule with all five teams competing. The conference season will begin on Friday, March 12 and will conclude with the GNAC Baseball Championships on May 20 and 21 at Northwest Nazarene University in Nampa, Idaho.

The GNAC also plans to conduct a full softball schedule with six of the league’s seven teams competing. Due to the continued closure of the U.S./Canada border, Simon Fraser University is unable to participate in the conference softball schedule. The conference schedule will begin on Friday, March 5 and concludes with the GNAC Softball Championships, May 6-8 at Western Oregon University in Monmouth.

The conference also affirmed its commitment to conduct its spring championships in the sports of golf, outdoor track and field and rowing. The GNAC Outdoor Track and Field Championships will take place May 14 and 15 at Western Oregon University. The combined event component of the championship will be conducted May 3 and 4 at Central Washington University in Ellensburg, Washington.

The GNAC Women’s Rowing Championships are scheduled to take place on Saturday, May 15 at a site to be determined.

The GNAC announced on Thursday that the 2021 GNAC Golf Championships will be conducted at The Home Course in DuPont, Washington. The two-day event will be held on April 19 and 20. The Home Course will also be the site of the Division II Men’s Golf West Regional Championship, hosted by Saint Martin’s, from May 6 to 8.

In order to ensure the health and safety of the student-athletes, coaches, officials and staff, and to provide the best opportunity to complete the spring seasons, spectators will not be allowed for regular-season events hosted by GNAC institutions for the remainder of the 2020-21 academic year. Additionally, spectators will not be allowed at the GNAC’s spring championships.

“We are pleased there is a pathway to a semblance of normalcy for most of our spring sports student-athletes, whose seasons were abruptly canceled a year ago,” said GNAC commissioner Dave Haglund. “It is a testament to the work put in by our athletic directors and their staffs over many months that we are able to move forward with conference softball and baseball seasons and in planning our spring championships. While all of us would love to open GNAC venues to spectators, the conference leadership determined it is in the best interests of the student-athletes, coaches and staff to not do so for the remainder of the academic year. We appreciate everyone’s understanding as we prioritize the health and safety of GNAC student-athletes during these unprecedented times.” 

The GNAC’s Management Council and CEO Board will continue to monitor developments related to the COVID-19 pandemic and make additional decisions as needed to ensure the health and safety of the conference’s student-athletes, coaches and staff.