By Lawrence Loiseau
The 100 Mile Old Timer’s Hockey League is underway and has grown in popularity.
Unlike last year that had four teams competing, this year there are five teams, including Sunrise Ford, Home Hardware, Rona Interlakes, TIMBER MART and A&W.
As of Oct. 31, Sunrise Ford is leading the league with six points, led by scoring leaders Dave Cunningham and Ken Heales, who have seven points a piece.
Sunrise defeated Rona Interlakes 5-2 in their last game. Interlakes is third in the league. Home Hardware is second while TIMBER MART and A&W are standing fourth and fifth respectively.
The Old Timer’s league has a draft system to determine who plays on what team. Players are chosen according to four different skill levels, with team representatives drawing from a hat to decide who picks first. This ensures parity in the league with players from all four levels distributed throughout the teams.
Skill level and player attendance figures heavily into why scores can be imbalanced at times.
Playing for A&W, league co-organizer Glen Wood notes that while they lost 9-2 against Home Hardware on Oct. 26, A&W came back and defeated Interlakes 9-1 on the next night.
It reflects the overall parity in the league, he says, adding every team can beat any other team.
“It depends on the combination of players who come out on any given night.”
While 100 Mile House has a women’s league, the Old Timer’s also include both men and women.
“It’s a league open to male and female players. There are two women in the league this year, and in the past, we’ve had up to five.”
Shift workers are given special consideration for league fees. Since they are not always able to play because of work commitments, they pay $190 for the season, as opposed to a full-time player fees of $290. Goalies pay a little less, at $140.
Local affiliated referees, time keepers and ice rental are funded through league fees. Jerseys and socks are paid for by the sponsors.
At the end of each game, an MVP player is picked for each team.
Go to the Old Timer’s website to see days and times the Old Timer’s play in 100 Mile House: http://www.carhahockey.ca/100-mile-oldtimers-hockey-association.