The B.C. Hockey League will have its most balanced schedule ever when the league kicks off Sept. 23, two weeks later than normal.
The BCHL held its Annual General Meeting June 2 to 4 in Richmond and met with governors, coaches and team marketers to wrap up the 2010-11 season and set out plans for 2011-12.
The coming season will be the league’s 50th anniversary and as it approaches, several celebratory events will be announced.
At the AGM, the league determined the number of home and away games for in- conference play.
The half-interlock schedule will have each team play every other team but visit only four rinks in the opposing conference.
Each club will play three of their conference opponents four times at home and four times on the road.
Against the remaining four conference opponents, it will be four at home and three on the road.
“We will have the 2011-12 schedule completed by the first week of July,” said BCHL executive director Dave Sales.
“Within conference, this is going to be the most balanced schedule we’ve ever seen.”
Another change is that the schedule will start Sept. 23, two weeks later than last year.
As such, it has been mandated that each club’s main training camp will begin no sooner than Aug. 22.
With respect to the board of governors, executive committee chairman Darcy Rota, of the Coquitlam Express, and Vernon Vipers owner Duncan Wray were named co-recipients of the league’s Executive of the Year award.
Rota also took the opportunity to announce he is stepping down as the BCHL board chairman.
Wray was nominated and accepted stepping into that role.
“Both Darcy and Duncan have been exemplary partners in our league and have elevated the BCHL’s status through their dedication,” said BCHL Commissioner John Grisdale.
“With Duncan moving into the chairman’s role, I know we will not miss a beat moving forward.”
Also, as Wray was already on the executive committee, Westside Warriors owner Mark Cheyne has joined the group to keep it at five members.
Surrey’s Ronnie Paterson will continue as co-chair and Trail’s Tom Gawryletz and Alberni Valley’s Andy Oakes stay on board as well.
“I have a great deal of respect for what Darcy did and I understand his reason for moving on,” said Wray. “There are still some things I’d like to accomplish and hopefully I can lead the charge with the new board.”