UPDATE: As we all know COVID-19 has been wreaking havoc on everything for the last 6-7 months. Last night PAHL sent out an email to all organizations regarding the current state of the season. Mid Am, our USA Hockey district governing body, will not sanction PAHL games if the PA state requirements are not being followed. As of now the guideline is the 25 participant rule, regardless of the individual rink guidelines.
What does that mean? It means without the "sanction," USA Hockey insurance will not cover your player if an incident occurs while playing in unsanctioned games/scrimmages/practices. PAHL is meeting this weekend to discuss a "game plan" to allow us to play. The WHA board will be discussing how we can make sure we are complying yet attempting to have as much of a "normal" season as possible. There may be changes around the rink including but not limited to single teams in the building at a time, practice times shifting for the upcoming weeks and limited spectators.
There is significant lobbying going on in Harrisburg right now to get the participant limit changed. The Atlantic District, which is in the eastern part of the state, is also in the same battle. PAHL has been in communication with them to join together in the fight to bring hockey back to normal.
So....in the meantime while we are all working behind the scenes to have a season, the main goal is keeping the players, coaches, managers, and parents safe. Regardless of individual views of the virus, the organization is following guidelines put in place by the State and league.
WHA will not participate in games or tournaments that are not following the guidelines in place for that state or area. If your team wants to do a tournament in state or out of state in the upcoming weeks, you must get it cleared by the board. It is a parents choice to have their child participate in such games, but WHA rosters and uniforms cannot be used for tournaments or games that are not sanctioned. PAHL will be sending out game plans this week as we work to bring the participation limit up and get back to normal hockey.
This does not mean games are canceled. It just means at the current time they may look different then we are used to. These changes are league-wide, not just at Westmoreland.
We all want the kids on the ice and WHA will do our best to keep them there.
Please remember when coming to the rink or responding to emails, these changes are not coming from WHA board members, Kirk S. Nevin staff members, coaches or managers but rather from USA Hockey's response to state guidelines.