Simply put, this is a tough time for Junior ‘B’ lacrosse players who are anxiously waiting to see if there will be a season.
In what is a trying time with the COVID-19 pandemic, lacrosse fans have most recently seen the Ontario Junior ‘C’ season cancelled along with the ever popular Six Nations Confederacy Tournament which is held in late May.
Meanwhile, no decisions will be made regarding the Ontario Junior ‘B’ Lacrosse Season until more than likely next month.
In a three paragraph statement published online by Junior ‘B’ commissioner Dave Vernon, he wrote, “The teams of the Ontario Junior ‘B’ Lacrosse League are preparing for potential modifications to the lacrosse season with two proposals that allow for the season to begin in either at the end of May or early July, depending on the health and safety of residents in Ontario and Quebec.” Vernon also added, “The Ontario Lacrosse Association has most recently extended its pause of in-person lacrosse activities until May 15th. Only when the Governments and the medical advisers have deemed it safe to move forward, will the OLA advise their membership that it is okay to resume activities. The Canadian Lacrosse Association has subsequently announced a similar May 15th extended date.” The commissioner also stressed that they will continue to plan for some form of Junior ‘B’ lacrosse competition for this year and that all information regarding to starting games will be posted on the Ontario Lacrosse Association website.
Reflecting on the situation Six Nations Rebels head coach Dean Hill believes that it won’t be an advantage or disadvantage to any team if there is a shortened season, but obviously safety is the most important factor.
“I think everyone is disappointed that lacrosse in general hasn’t started yet, I know everyone is chomping at the bit to get started,” Hill said. “We also need to consider everyone’s safety and health when it comes to something like this.”
According to Hill, if there is a season Rebels fans can expect a younger, fast and determined team looking to take that next step after coming up short by a 16-15 score in last year’s Founders Cup championship game against Calgary.
“This years’ Rebels team will be a lot younger than previous seasons,” so people can expect us to be a fast team full of energy,” Hill said. “We build a team year after year to win a Founders Cup. We lost a lot of great players from last year’s team who really carried the load for us, but with that being said it gives other guys the opportunity to step into those roles now.”
Itching to once again put on the Rebels colors and help in that quest for a Founders Cup is Tycie Cowan who expressed confidence that granted if there is a season, that Six Nations could take another serious run at the Founders Cup.
“We know what we can do and we still have a core group to go all the way again this year,” Cowan said. “We’re always a threat and we will be for years to come. We’ve established that many years ago and I couldn’t be happier to be a part of the family.”
For now, Junior ‘B’ lacrosse fans and players continue to play the waiting game on what the league decides what to do for the 2020 season.