What was supposed to be an afternoon matinee Sunday against the Powell River Kings turned into a practice day for the B.C. Hockey League’s Cowichan Valley Capitals.
As part of her COVID-19 update on Saturday afternoon, provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry ordered the shut down of all indoor group activities in the Fraser Health and Vancouver Coastal Health regions due to a raise in cases.
Powell River sits within the Vancouver Coastal Health Region.
“We thought they were on the exempt list,” said Caps’ head coach Brian Passmore on Sunday, just before he took to the ice for an unscheduled team practice. “I thought Powell River was exempt from the the Metro Vancouver Health Region but they are included and so the league cancelled the game as a precaution and to avoid mixed messaging and confusion.”
The Kings were originally exempt from the order, however, so the league and its teams are hoping for clarification as to their status.
Both the Capitals and Kings fully support and cooperate with the Provincial Health Office and will await further rulings and instructions for future scheduled games, but Passmore hopes it gets worked out soon so his team could get back to playing hockey games.
“Powell River is going to be talking with their municipality and local governments on Monday and get a more definitive answer,” Passmore said. “We have to try to make up this game.”
The Powell River Kings are the only team Cowichan is scheduled to play against in November.
In addition to Sunday’s postponed home game, the Capitals are slated to play their next contest at Powell River’s Hab Parker Arena on Nov. 14, followed by the four more, all against Powell River, at The Stick on Nov. 21, Nov. 22, Nov. 25 and Nov. 28.
The Caps had a 5-3-0 record against the Kings last season but have yet to face the team this year.
All told, seven preseason games between Nov. 8 and Nov. 21 were halted due to the PHO order, including games featuring the Chilliwack Chiefs, Coquitlam Express, Langley Rivermen and Surrey Eagles. The pause is expected to last two weeks.