NEWS RELEASE: The Ontario Junior C Lacrosse League (OJCLL), the Stepping Stone for Canada’s Game, is saddened to announce the cancellation of the 2020 Jr. C lacrosse season due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In an online league meeting this week, discussions between the league’s 17 teams focused on the safety of players, staff, officials, and fans, as well as arena availability.
“The physical nature of lacrosse, along with the reality of locker rooms, showers, buses, and even spectator seating made it impossible for us to envision a way that we could responsibly begin play anytime soon,” said League Commissioner Reg Holinshead. “Arena availability was also a concern, with two clubs unable to take the floor until at least August 1st, and many others without homes until July at the earliest. This was a really tough decision for our league because, like our players and fans, we would love to be in arenas thinking about goals, saves, and hits – not sick relatives, social distancing, and economic uncertainty. Unfortunately, that just wasn’t realistic, and we needed to put the health of our players, staff, officials, and fans first.”
The OJCLL, which features players aged 17-21, was set to begin its 13th season in Oakville on April 24th. The league is home to 17 teams from Ontario and Quebec, including new franchises from Orangeville and Six Nations for the 2020 season.
“The lacrosse community has been deeply impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. We have Jr. C players who have lost family members to this awful disease, fans who are out of work, and sponsors that have closed their doors. It’s a terrible situation and our thoughts are with all those who have been affected. On behalf of all 17 of our teams, I want to wish everyone involved with the league good health and safety as we navigate through these troubling times,” Holinshead added.
The OJCLL will continue to work closely with the Ontario and Canadian Lacrosse Associations regarding the 2021 season and the impact of this year’s cancellation on players. Please follow @OJCLL on Facebook and Twitter for additional updates. Questions and concerns should be directed to Reg Holinshead.
Yours in lacrosse,
Jr. C Council