In 23 years as the St. Bonaventure Men and Women's head tennis coach, Michael Bates has never had to deal with something quite like the COVID-19 pandemic. While a large group of the Bonnies' athletic department was over 300 miles away in Brooklyn, New York for the A-10 Men's Basketball Championship, Bates was conducting practice on the St. Bonaventure campus when he was told to cease practice for the foreseeable future. Coach Bates now had to transition from preparing for matches against Wright State and Daemen, to ensuring the health and safety of his players.
Although the St. Bonaventure tennis teams were aware of what was happening around the world, Bates still had to find the right way to navigate his teams through this situation. In the days following the NCAA's decision to cancel all spring sports, the only thing Bates could do was keep his players informed and encourage them to take the proper precautions.
"Obviously you feel bad for the seniors not having a chance to compete one more time, having a chance to go to the A-10's, and not having their senior day, everything just happened so quickly," said Bates.
For the full feature from the Atlantic 10 click here.
Stay connected with St. Bonaventure athletics through social media. Follow the Bonnies on Twitter @GoBonnies and get tennis updates @BonniesTennis. Keep up with the Bonnies on Facebook /GoBonnies and on Instagram @GoBonnies.