Attention hockey players: B.C.’s longest running rec league needs you.
After 45 years in operation, the Mill Bay Rec Hockey League is in danger of folding this fall unless a handful of new players can step forward.
According to longtime commissioner Al Johnson, the league is about six players short of being able to ice a fourth team, which would be necessary to push forward this season.
“It would be a shame,” he said. “No. 1 for the league not to carry on, and No. 2 for the young players on the other teams not to have anywhere to play.”
Johnson knows there are a lot of hockey players around who recently finished their midget careers and maybe didn’t make junior, but are still looking for a place to play good hockey. The MBRHL has always held a high standard, with several former collegiate, junior A and junior B players involved.
“It’s a highly competitive league,” Johnson said.
The league currently consists of three teams: the Bandits, made up largely of former Kerry Park Islanders junior B players; the Chiefs, who have been around since the league started with fathers passing the team on to their sons; and the Outlaws, formerly known as the Horses, who are the defending champs and have won four of the last five league titles.
A makeshift fourth team has rounded out the league the last four years, but Johnson has so far had trouble cobbling one together for 2019-20. He has five or six players for the fourth team right now, but needs at least 10 to 12 to start the season.
According to Johnson, the other teams don’t want a three-team league, as it would lead to too many games against the same teams.
Anyone interested in playing should call Johnson at 250-999-5463 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. He knows you’re out there.
“I know there are a lot of hockey players out there, from midget or junior,” he said. “Or guys from Mill Bay who may want to come back and play hockey again.”