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Friday , 5 March 2021

NEAJBHL season over; Bonnyville Pontiacs hopeful for return soon

The North Eastern Alberta Junior B Hockey League season is officially over.

Hockey Alberta made the announcement last Wednesday that junior and senior hockey league play is finished for the season, with the exception of the Alberta Junior Hockey League, which is vying for a separate exemption from the province to return to the ice.

That means the Cold Lake Ice, St. Paul Jr. Canadiens, Lac La Biche Clippers, and Vermilion Tigers’ seasons are over early, after the teams played between 1-4 regular season games back in November.

In the Government of Alberta’s “A Path Forward”, Step 3 outlines the potential return of ‘adult team sports’ which could potentially occur in mid to late March and would allow these teams to skate again.

It’s the second straight season where a NEAJBHL champion will not be crowned, after the final between the Lac La Biche Clippers and St. Paul Canadiens was postponed, and then cancelled in March 2020.

Meanwhile, the Bonnyville Jr. A Pontiacs are hoping that they’ll get clearance from the chief medical officer to return to play for a developmental season, but as of Monday, no formal announcement has been made.

About Michael Menzies

Menzies is the editor-at-large for Connected Media Inc. Born and raised in Vermilion, he started in May 2018 during his NAIT Radio and Television practicum and reports on local politics, sports, and community issues. He became the Bonnyville Pontiacs play-by-play voice during the 2019-20 season. He also comments on provincial and national issues. Menzies hosts Connected! Evening Monday-Thursday at 5 o’clock. He also likes to buy books and read some of them.