Lacrosse clubs training with restrictions

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Lacrosse clubs are returning to training and practices as the province slowly begins to re-open.

With many arenas still closed, some box lacrosse teams have started outdoor training where they have appropriate facilities.

Even with practices allowed there are still a number of restrictions in place that must be following when teams get together.

Groups are limited to ten players and there must not be any contact during training sessions.

So far, games are not allowed, but leagues are planning ahead and working on schedules in the hope that the province moves to the next phase of reopening.

It will be a welcome step forward for Junior Level teams in the province. They lost their entire season last year and have not started any kind of league play this season. Junior teams normally start their season in April or May and wrap up in July.

That means graduating veteran players from last year lost their final year of eligibility.

Ontario Lacrosse has already cancelled the Junior A Minto Cup and the Junior B Founder's Cup national championships for this year.

“We're hoping that our league is going to have a ten game scheduled this year,” said Orangeville Junior A Northmen head coach, Bruce Codd, of the Ontario Junior A Lacrosse League. “A couple of weeks ago it didn't look like we were going to have anything. Our league was one of the amateur sports that was granted an exemption to have a competitive season. We're hoping that in the end of middle of July we'll have a three or four week season where we get ten games in and have an Ontario championship. We won't be competing for the Minto Cup like we normally do.”

The Northmen are fortunate that there is a local outdoor ice pad with boards so they can practice in an arena type setting.

Even if junior clubs can get a season in, there likely won't be any fans in the building to watch the games. Teams are planning on streaming games so fans can watch from home.

Ontario Lacrosse has listed the steps that must be taken by member clubs as the province moves through the phases of re-opening.

Brian Lockhart, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, New Tecumseth Times

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