There will be no BC Hockey provincial minor championships in B.C. in 2021.
BC Hockey, which partners with host districts and associations to put on 16 minor championships across B.C. and Yukon in under-13, U15, U18 and U21 divisions, has nixed the events amid the novel coronavirus pandemic.
"The focus this year amidst the COVID-19 pandemic is to safely operate local programming so that our youth can participate in hockey,” Bill Greene, chairman of the board for BC Hockey, said in a press release.
“Our districts and associations are working creatively and diligently to offer various programs which follow viaSport and Hockey Canada's Return to Sport safety guidelines."
Under current viaSport guidelines, teams can participate in cohorts that include a maximum of four teams.
Districts and associations would have to alter schedules to include 14-day breaks between teams changing cohorts if B.C. championships were to go ahead.
“This could prohibit many of the districts to use the traditional seasonal qualification of teams to participate fairly in B.C. hockey championships,” the BC Hockey press release said.
“With the unpredictability of what regulations and guidelines for travel and competition will be next March when minor championships occur, BC Hockey is making this proactive decision early in the season to cancel minor championships for 2021.”
The press release said BC Hockey will work with districts and associations to pursue enhanced local or regional championships.
BC Hockey followed Hockey Canada’s direction to cancel its 2020 provincial championships in March.