After nearly a year of bad news, cancellations and postponed seasons, good news has finally broken through, just as spring athletic sports begin the home stretch of the season. 

On Mar. 9, a change in the Goshen College spectator policy for the 2021 spring season was made. The GC athletic department discussed and came to an agreement with the GC Pandemic Task Force, announcing Tuesday new rules for outdoor sporting events.

The shift has been made as all Goshen College students and faculty currently have access to events at the Ingold Athletic Complex and Gunden Gymnasium. 

GC athletes will now also have the ability to invite four permitted guests each from outside of the college. Despite the changes, the Big Four still remain and social distancing rules and capacity limitations will still apply.

All spectators must show identification along with following Goshen College COVID-19 protocols. Some requirements are: everyone must wear a face mask with an exception for competing athletes, families can sit together but must be distant from others and everyone must follow regular safety guidelines. 

With this change has come plenty of excitement from the fans and GC community, but also from GC athletes. Goshen College softball player Rayna Moraga, senior pitcher and outfielder, spoke on the policy. 

“I can agree with it since we have not had a rise in COVID-19 cases and a lot of people are starting to get their vaccinations,” Moraga said. “I think having people in the crowd has a huge impact on player and team performance because we like to show out.” 

As the state of Indiana and Goshen College make progress with COVID-19, the hope remains that the return of all fans from different areas will come soon, and an even larger crowd of fans can safely take part in watching GC teams compete.