Six Nations lacrosse fans will have to wait until next summer before they can watch and cheer on their beloved Six Nations Stealth.
After not having a junior ‘C’ team last year, Six Nations fans were anxiously looking forward to once again packing the Iroquois Lacrosse Arena to watch the return of their team but due to COVID-19 that will not happen as the Ontario Junior ‘C’ Lacrosse League on Friday, April 17th officially cancelled the season.
“I was hoping for an abbreviated season, or a condensed season, but I was a little skeptical after the OLA first said nothing until May 15th,” former Six Nations Junior ‘C’ coach Jay Smith said. Smith had quite the impressive track record with what was then called the Six Nations Warriors, as he served as GM and assistant coach in 2015 before taking over head coaching duties in 2017 and 2018.
This season marked a new challenge for Smith who was supposed to begin his first season behind the bench as head coach for the Oakville Junior ‘C’ Hawks. Despite the setback of a cancelled season, Smith is taking it all in stride. ” “Although it’s a little disappointing I was half expecting a cancelation,” he said.
Prior to the announcement Smith travelled to Oakville where he observed an Oakville Buzz Jr ‘A’ tryout, and came away thrilled by the overall talent he saw.
“I was incredibly impressed with how in shape the players showed up in,” Smith said. “They didn’t use training camp to get in shape. They showed up in shape.”
Prior to making the cancellation public, the league held lengthy discussions on Wednesday and Friday before the decision was made to cancel the 2020 Ontario Junior ‘C’ lacrosse season.
As Peterborough Lakers Junior ‘C’ head coach Dave Baker put it, “For the well-being of all the players, the refs, the timekeepers, the coaches, the trainers, the parents, the grandparents, it’s not worth it. We’re going to cancel the season and start fresh in 2021.”