LANGLEY — If you’ve got plans to be playing in, coaching, watching or officiating a B.C. high school basketball game over the first two days of the season, you may have to cool your sneakers for a couple of days.
B.C. School Sports announced late Wednesday that the start of the winter season of play has been delayed for at least two days.
The season was supposed to start this Monday, Nov. 29.
Said BCSS as part of a press release issued around 9 p.m. Monday: “After consultation with the Ministry of Education, the Board has delayed the start of the winter season of play to Wednesday December 1, 2021. The Board will reassess this date on Monday November 29, 2021. This means that winter season of play sports may not engage in inter-school competition/scrimmages until this date. Thank you for your patience and support as we continue to work through these unexpected challenges.”
Reached Monday night for comment by VarsityLetters.ca, B.C. School Sports executive director Jordan Abney said the decision was based, in part, on the sheer number of teams which would have to travel at a time when fuel rationing is in effect around the province.
“We’ve been in discussions with districts and superintendents around the province,” Abney said. “And we’ve been in contact with Ministry of Education on this. Being in provincials for our fall season sports, there are very few teams on overall scale, relatively speaking, that are still participating because you get that narrowed-down effects of just those teams remaining who have qualified for provincials.
“Basketball, you have 450 to 500 teams, all raring to go, and so with the gas shortage being at this critical stage and the ask from government for everyone to ration wherever possible, delaying a couple of days to allow for those things to work themselves out is in alignment with the state of emergency that has been in place.”
When asked if press release’s wording of re-visiting the situation on Monday meant that the season could well be allowed to begin that day, Abney said otherwise.
“I don’t think so,” he said. “I think it will be Dec. 1 at earliest. We are waiting to hear from the government. We are cautiously optimistic in terms of not having to extend further, hoping it is not required and that everyone will be ready to go on that date. But it won’t be prior to that date.”
B.C. high school basketball’s last game was played March 7, 2020 at the Langley Events Centre when the boys Quad-A championship final was contested, meaning it will be some 635 days by the time tip-off takes place on Dec. 1.
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