A men’s flag football league has taken flight in Cornwall, with games played Wednesday evenings and Sunday on a field at Optimist Park.
In a match played August 30 between Cornwall Volkswagen and Planet Fitness, the latter prevailed 42-22. Amongst the athletes helping Team Blue, Alex Zarifi recorded a pair of touchdowns, while Eric Bowman threw for two. Bowman also ran in a major and snagged an interception.
Thanks to Costa Zarifi for recording these two videos of the action. The one above shows an interception thrown by Bowman, while the movie below has Bowman on a QB run.
Heading into play tonight (September 8), Planet Fitness sits in second place, with 10 points, trailing Crossfit Cornwall (12). Cornwall Volkswagen has 2 points, for sixth spot. Rounding out the standings are third-place Jas-Mar (8 points), Campeau Insurance (6), Rookez (4), and Hyundai (0).
Local competitive sports have been in short supply of late, but the Cornwall Wildcats are working to change that, offering a youth flag football program. The midget level kicked off last Friday at Joe St. Denis Field, with other levels to begin play in the week ahead.
Levels of play in the league, with all matches in Cornwall, are mosquito (DOB 2009, 2010, 2011), peewee (DOB 2007, 2008), bantam (DOB 2005, 2006), and midget (DOB 2002, 2003, 2004).
The flag football program follows the cancellation of contact football leagues in the region due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. In the case of the Wildcats, this meant there would be no NCAFA youth tackle football this fall.
The World Junior A Hockey Challenge tournament was scheduled to be held in December but has now been cancelled as part of Hockey Canada’s suspension of events booked for fall 2020.
It would have been the 15th annual edition of the international hockey tournament that features tier 2 junior ‘A’ teams from hockey-dominant countries. Traditionally, Canada has two entries, and local players have featured on past squads.
The 2020 event had been scheduled for December 13-19 with games to be played at the Cornwall Civic Complex.
According to the Hockey Canada release, organizers will be looking to reschedule the event to December 2021.
Other cancelled tournaments are the national women’s under-18 championship, set for November in B.C., and the para hockey cup, booked for December in Nova Scotia.
From the announcement, “Hockey Canada’s priority remains the health and safety of all participants and the general public. We believe the decision to cancel these events is the safest decision given the ongoing uncertainty of the [COVID-19] pandemic at the local level, as well as the international implications associated with these events.”
On the heels of an announcement that our federal government would not provide an interest-free loan to the Canadian Football League in order to pave the way to an abbreviated 2020 season to be held in Winnipeg, the CFL today officially announced there will be no games this year and that they will now focus on 2021.
The cancellation of yet another league’s football season adds to the list this year, as one-by-one associations have cancelled play due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Locally, as previously reported on this website, we have seen the cancellation of spring youth football, the province-wide OFC league, and NCAFA (fall tackle football). Nationally, university football has pre-emptively been cancelled in three of four associations (Ontario, West, and Atlantic).
“The Canadian Football League is shifting its focus to 2021 and beyond after deciding not to play a shortened season this Fall.”
CFL announcement, 17 August 2020
The CFL’s commissioner, Randy Ambrosie, was quoted in the league’s announcement, saying, “Our league governors decided today it is in the best long-term interests of the CFL to concentrate on the future. We are absolutely committed to 2021, to the future of our league, and the pursuit of our vision of a bigger, stronger, more global CFL.”
The CFL’s key point of revenue generation is ticket sales, so that means fans in the seats, something that isn’t in the cards for this year. The league had been exploring a plan to play all games in Winnipeg, without fans in attendance, and was looking for some help from the federal government, in the form of a loan to do so. Word came out over the weekend that the loan application had been rejected.
Eastern Ontario’s entry in the CFL, the Ottawa RedBlacks, announced on Twitter, “Our sights are now set on the 2021 Season. Nous regardons maintenant vers la saison 2021.”
Following the announcement of the cancellation of the NCAFA (fall youth tackle football) season, the Cornwall Wildcats Football Club has put together a plan to offer flag football in the Seaway City.
Game format will be seven-on-seven, with the action to take place in September and October, though practices are slated to start later this month.
In the announcement, the Wildcats note that the sport’s governing body, Football Ontario, has moved into phase three of its return to play plan. This allows for club-level training and flag football. In other words, teams can compete in-house, but not against other football club.
The Wildcats stress that registration is limited in number, due to Football Ontario restrictions. registration will be closed once maximum numbers are reached at each level.
The Wildcats plan to form teams at the conclusion of the registration period, together with a practice and game schedule, with the aim for a six to eight-game season, with one practice session per week.
Age groups are mosquito (DOB 2009, 2010, 2011), peewee (DOB 2007, 2008), bantam (DOB 2005, 2006), and midget (DOB 2002, 2003, 2004). For further details, including a link to register, please see this webpage.
During a practice session on the clay oval at the Cornwall Motor Speedway on Sunday, Alexandria race car driver Joey Ladouceur set a new track record in the 358-Modified class, completing the circuit in 12.640 seconds.
Ladouceur tells me, “The track record was set during practice in the Modified division, driving our family-owned #23 Mr Radiator Auto Service Dirt Modified (Cornwall’s premier division) car. The chassis is a Bicknell chassis (built in St. Catharine’s ,Ontario), and the engine is one that my dad, Laurent [a Glengarry Sport Hall of Fame inductee], built. Most of the other competitors have engines that they buy from professional engine builders that cost $25,000 – $30,000, so it was nice to have something that we built ourselves beat all the professionally-built engines.”
On the conditions for the August 9 racing, the veteran drivers says, “After a brief rain delay, and some prepping of the moist clay by the speedway track crew, the track conditions were perfect for a track record (there’s a lot of traction when the clay transitions from slippery to tacky/sticky. After that is begins to harden and slowly transitions to hard clay, kinda like polishing cement, which leads to a decline in traction and slower lap times.”
With the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, some aspects of hockey life have gone on, while others have stopped or been changed. For a young goaltender from Embrun, the situation over the past few months delayed his visit to his OHL draft club until this week.
The 15-year-old Jackson Parsons, who was picked in the 2020 OHL draft in the third round, 53rd overall, by the Kitchener Rangers. The top junior league in the province held its draft virtually this year, so this recent visit to the team’s home was Parsons’ first opportunity to see their facilities and meet in-person with staff.
The Central Canada Hockey League (junior ‘A’) held its Annual General Meeting on June 29, the first time it had been done via video conferencing, for the 12 clubs of the Eastern Ontario loop.
“While uncertainty remains, the return to play protocols developed by Hockey Eastern Ontario through our four local health units and the Canadian Junior Hockey League have allowed us to prepare for the upcoming weeks and months.
The CCHL will conduct its scheduled meeting on July 15, and at that time will confirm the start date and schedule length based on the most current information of the day.
We look forward to hitting the ice for training camp and our annual showcase when it is safe for players, officials and spectators to do so.
CCHL announcement following the 2020 Annual General Meeting
The 2019-20 came to an abrupt end in March, with the playoffs set to begin, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the mandated Hockey Canada shutdown.
The Hawkesbury Hawks (36-24-2-0) were scheduled to play the Smiths Falls Bear (33.24-3-2) in their opening-round playoff series, while the Cornwall Colts (21-35-1-5) didn’t qualify for post-season action.