The Goshen College cross country team was tested for COVID-19 last Thursday, Aug. 27, becoming the first Maple Leaf athletic team to do so. All results came back negative.

By Thursday, Sept. 2,  all fall athletic teams will have taken part in COVID-19 testing in anticipation of a Sept. 5 start.

While the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics withdrew their COVID-19 test requirement for all athletes, the Crossroads League, of which Goshen College is a member, continues to plan carrying out testing.

“The Crossroads League decided to test all fall athletes,” said Erica Albertin, interim athletic director. “The main reason to do that was to have a gateway test so everybody goes into the season with negative tests.” 

Albertin also mentioned the possibility of testing the winter and spring sports teams as well, but because fall sports start the soonest, their health and safety was the first priority.

“I am elated that we are taking precautions so I don’t die,” said Kadie Spoor, senior and member of the cross country team. “I think that it’s very responsible that Goshen College is testing all of its fall athletes to ensure the safety of all of the fall sports teams.”

The expectation to test all fall athletes is not without challenge. A majority of the teams are still waiting for results after testing on Tuesday, Sept. 1.

“I was uneasy with waiting so long for the test results,” Spoor said, noting that the cross country team continued to practice while waiting for the COVID-19 test results.

Now that the entire team has tested negative, the running season can begin.

“I am most excited about being part of a team that is a cohesive unit where everybody supports each other and creates a positive environment,” Spoor said.

The cross country season is set to start on Sept. 11 in Marion, Indiana, as part of the IWU Twilight Classic.