The Port Hope Panthers are set to return to action as the PJHL returns from a month long hiatus due to government restrictions imposed by the Ontario government. The Panthers, having last played on December 16, will return to the ice on January 31, with their first game back being on February 5 against the Tod Division leading Amhertsview Jets.
With a wrench being thrown into season plans for a third straight year, the PJHL has been forced to re-work the league schedule, meaning the Panthers will complete a 30 game regular season, instead of the previously planned 35 game schedule.
“It is unfortunate that play was put on pause, as the season was going really well for us until the recent shutdown” Assistant Coach Connor Armour said. “From a coaching perspective, we were really pleased with how the team was starting to play. We were really starting to see buy in from every guy in our dressing room, which helps create those championship type habits teams need to be successful in the playoffs.”
Prior to the provincial shut down, the Panthers had accumulated a record of 9-1-1-1 in the months of November and December. “We had a really good stretch of hockey just before we got shut down in which we saw a lot of really good things” Armour explained. “We were playing hard, honest hockey and our record portrayed that.”
The Panthers will now have 8 games over the span of a month, leading into the PJHL playoffs, which kick off March 6.
“Going into the final eight games, I think the first few games back are going to be a little bit choppy. However, everyone is in the same boat and on equal playing grounds. I think it’s a great opportunity to start amping things up in preparation for a lengthy playoff run. In the end though, its just great to be able to finally be back at the rink and see the kids on the ice.”
The remaining schedule can be found at the following link:
The Panthers look forward to welcoming fans back at Jack Burger Sports Complex on February 5! #PackTheJack #LetsGoPanthers