The Bonnyville Sr. Pontiacs season is nearing.
After not being able to play games last year in the North Central Hockey League due to the season’s cancellation, there is optimism for a return to some sense of normalcy this year.
The team held their main camp over the weekend at the C2 with over 20 skaters out on the ice as they prepare for the first game next weekend.
Due to current government restrictions, the team is navigating a way for some unvaccinated players to provide negative tests in order to progress throughout the season, as the Centennial Centre dropped their REP program last week.
“We still have to do our due diligence and have our vaccine papers and/or our negative tests in place,” said coach Corey Wandler.
“It’s just going to be up to us to kind of get our ducks in a row and how we’re going to get down the road to keep everyone safe and to comply with the restrictions and all the regulations that we’re facing.”
There are familiar faces that fans should recognize from team’s in year’s past.
Lucas Islay, Denis Cadrin, Tanner Corbeil, and Colton Buchta are a few of the players who have committed to rejoining the team for the 21-22 season. A couple former Pontiacs in Ryan Piche and Alden Dupuis could be coming aboard, as well as Junior B alums from Onion Lake and Saddle Lake.
“We have a good group of players. We have a lot of forwards,” said Wandler.
The Sr. Pontiacs first game of the year is scheduled Oct. 16 against Red Deer in Penhold. They’ll play the following Sunday in Blackfalds, before hosting their home opener Sunday, Oct. 24 against Devon.
The last time the Sr. Pontiacs took the ice, they were eliminated in four games against top-seeded Morinville Kings in February 2020.