NISA cancels spring season, sets sights on August start to fall championship

After playing just seven games over two weekends in its first official season, NISA has shut down the spring championship.

In a statement, the new Division III pro league said getting back in action and finishing the spring season, scheduled to end in June, became "an unrealistic time frame for the league to get back to the pitch to complete the season" because of the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

NISA, which entered eight teams in the spring championship, will push forward with plans for the fall when it will welcome the New York Cosmos and New Amsterdam FC. It plans to start the fall season in August and end in November.

A decision on whether to play behind closed doors, with a limited number of fans or without restrictions in the stands will be made by NISA's COVID-19 Task Force, comprised of medical experts, along with guidance from the CDC and concern for the health and well being of players, staff and fans.

NISA plans on launching the NISA Independent Cup, a pre-season competition played on a regional basis behind closed doors between NISA clubs and amateur clubs, beginning in mid-July.

"The world has changed, and with it, so must we," NISA commissioner John Prutch said in a statement. "Whether you're an athlete or a business, you can adapt to unique challenges. At NISA, these shifts are being made in fundamental business strategies using creative, adaptive, and strategic solutions to resume play when it is safe and reasonable to do so with continued advisory from top medical experts. The path to achieving these goals is fluid as we adapt to an ever-evolving landscape, and we will proceed with care and ensure all of the appropriate steps are in place as we move forward."
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