Sicamous Eagle Jacob Chafe and Ethan Schaeffer of the Revelstoke Grizzlies race for the puck in the Grizzlies’ end during a game at the Sicamous and District Rec Centre and on Sunday, Oct. 28. (Jim Elliot/Eagle Valley News)

Sicamous Eagles will face Grizzlies and Rockets to start KIJHL season

As part of a three-team cohort due to COVID-19, the Eagles will have only two foes in first 12 games

The Sicamous Eagles will be getting to know their opponents very well as teams will be divided into cohorts to start the coming KIJHL season.

To comply with guidelines set out by B.C.’s provincial health officer the league will be split up into two groups of four teams and three groups of three teams. After the puck drops on Nov. 13 teams will play the first 12 games of the season within their cohorts before the groups are shuffled following the Christmas break.

The Eagles will have a lot of Highway 1 mountain travel in their future to start the season as they join the Revelstoke Grizzlies and the Golden Rockets in a three-team cohort.

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After playing their opening 12 games and then heading into a 14-day break for Christmas, the Eagles will begin facing off against their new opponents, the Kelowna Chiefs and North Okanagan Knights. The 18 games played with their phase-two cohort will take teams through to the end of the regular season.

The league has not announced its playoff structure yet as guidelines from the province may change by March 2021. When the KIJHL confirmed a mid-November start date they added that current regulations will make it impossible to have fans in the building for games this season. Current guidelines from the provincial government require the number of people in the building at one time to be capped at 50. With players, coaches and staff included in that count, the stands will remain empty until regulations change.

A complete schedule of games is expected to be released on Sept. 25.

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