The Big 9 Conference has released scaled-back schedules for fall sports due to the COVID-19 pandemic that include boys and girls cross-country, boys and girls soccer, girls swimming and diving and girls tennis, with football and volleyball moved to the spring of 2021.
The Austin Packers girls’ tennis team, as per the norm, will kick off the fall sports season as they are scheduled to start Tuesday, August 25th at home versus Faribault. As of now, the Packers are scheduled to play 11 regular season dual matches against Big 9 opponents. Due to MSHSL COVID-19 protocol, no triangulars or quadragulars will be played this season.
The Austin Packer boys’ and girls’ cross-country teams are scheduled to start Thursday, August 27th in Mankato for a dual meet with the West Scarlets at Dakota Meadows Middle School. The boys’ competition is scheduled to start at 3:30 that afternoon, followed by the girls at 5:00 p.m. Both squads are scheduled to make their home debut on Thursday, September 3rd versus Albert Lea at Meadow Greens Golf Course.
The Austin Packers boys’ and girls’ soccer teams are both scheduled to open their 2020 seasons on Tuesday, September 1st versus the Faribault Falcons, with the girls at home that evening at Art Hass Stadium at 7:00 p.m., while the boys will travel to Bruce Smith Field for a 7:00 p.m. road start. Both teams are scheduled to play 11 games versus Big 9 opponents, and the MSHSL has not determined at this time as to whether there will be any kind of post-season playoffs.
The Austin Packers girls’ swimming and diving teams are scheduled to start the 2020 season in Rochester against the John Marshall Rockets on Tuesday, September 1st at 4:00 p.m. The Packers will then be off until Thursday, September 24th when they travel to Winona, and Austin High School Activities Director Lisa Quednow stated that due to MSHSL COVID-19 protocol, no spectators will be allowed to attend the meets, but they will be live streaming them.
Quednow went on to add that there can be up to 250 spectators at soccer, tennis and cross country meets. She indicated that schools are still working on how that will look and who will be included, as well as the processes.