The Stony Brook men’s basketball team was scheduled to open its season against the Bryant Bulldogs on Wednesday, Nov. 25, but the game was scrapped early Wednesday morning after a referee reportedly tested positive for COVID-19.
“It’s going on all over the country,” head coach Geno Ford said about the situation in a press release. “We will stay focused on what we can control and are optimistic and excited to play Saturday against a good Fairfield team.”
Stadium’s Jeff Goodman was the first to report that a positive test from outside either program caused the game to be canceled, later clarifying that a referee who was scheduled to work the game tested positive.
The cancelation is emblematic of the hectic nature involved in scheduling college basketball games during the pandemic. Stony Brook was originally set to kick off its season with the Marist Red Foxes, but that game itself was replaced with Bryant after positive COVID-19 tests at Marist meant that the Red Foxes had not practiced since Nov. 1.
Although Stony Brook is fortunate to have not experienced positive COVID-19 tests within the program, other schools in the America East Conference have seen their plans drastically altered. Five teams, amounting to half of the conference – Vermont, Albany, Binghamton, UMass Lowell and Maine – have had all basketball activities shut down as a result of positive tests related to the team.
Wednesday’s game was the first of a two-game home-and-home series with Bryant this year. The Bulldogs are still scheduled to play Stony Brook at Island Federal Arena on Dec. 12.
Stony Brook will now look to open its 2020-21 season home this Saturday, Nov. 29 against the Fairfield Stags.