Junior B hockey players across B.C. will be wearing full face protection next season.
BC Hockey has mandated that full face protection is required by all BC Hockey Junior B players starting for the 2018-2019 season. It covers the Vancouver Island Junior Hockey League (VIJHL), where The Peninsula Panthers in North Saanich have already adopted the change this season.
The change will not be implemented at the Junior A level in B.C., or in the Western Hockey League (WHL).
Full face protection will also cover the Kootenay International Junior Hockey League (KIJHL), Pacific Junior Hockey League (PJHL), and two B.C. teams in the North West Junior Hockey League.
President of the VIJHL Barb Byrne says the league did not adopt full face shields this season, as the team ownership was split on the issue. Adopting the policy would require teams to buy new equipment. She said by the time the discussion was on the table, most teams already had their budgets set for the season.
Read more about the mask protection changes via Cowichan Valley Citizen.