New Senior AA hockey team plays home opener
The Creemore Coyotes will take to the ice for their home opener at the Creemore Arena on Oct. 16.
Team president and founder Tom Macham said the team is off to a bit of a rocky start but is confident that once they can get through the season, next year will be better.
The WOAA league senior AA has had a few setbacks in its inaugural year, including losing its top-notch coach ex-NHLer Sylvain Clouthier to an irresistible offer elsewhere, and Macham has been struggling for increased capacity at the arena but has been limited by township staff to 140 attendees, making for a financial crunch.
In its first game, the team lost a player to injury, and has lost two others who are not vaccinated for COVID-19 and are therefore barred from entering the arena. Another three players are waiting for their vaccinations to take full effect.
“We haven’t been devastated. Other teams in the league are hurting too,” said Macham, adding that other teams have lost up to six players who aren’t vaccinated, or have delayed vaccination, and one team has lost half its players.
With only about 10 players present at each of the games, the Coyotes won their first exhibition game Sept. 12 2-1 against the Shallow Lake Crushers, but lost the second game against the Shelburne Muskies 7-5. The team lost its first regular season game 5-7 at Shelburne.
Although the team lost its coach and has sights on a new one, player Kyle Linney said he is confident that the team can still have a good first year, and sees this season as a stepping stone to the next one.
The Coyotes will play in Ripley, taking on the Wolves Oct. 9 and will play the Durham Thundercats on Oct. 15 before playing their first home game in Creemore on Saturday, Oct. 16. Gametime is 7:30 p.m. Admission costs $10.
The team is in need of volunteers for home games, to sell admission tickets, check proof of vaccination, and sell 50/50 tickets. There are also five to 10 executive positions that need to be filled, including secretary and treasurer. The team is also looking for sponsors. For more information, contact Macham at 705-435-8469, or firstname.lastname@example.org.