League Expands Again
The OJHL’s developmental league has grown once again.
The Ontario Junior Development League (OJDL), which is entering its third season of operations, will feature 15 entrants this year.
The circuit, which runs during the spring and summer, enables Junior A prospects the opportunity to showcase their skills in front of OJHL team officials.
Just four squads took part in the OJDL’s inaugural season in 2015. That number jumped to 14 entrants last year.
The Burlington Cougars and Newmarket Hurricanes will enter two teams each in this year’s league, which kicks off on May 14.
As in previous years, the OJDL will feature three divisions with all matches being staged in Oakville, Oshawa and Toronto.
The Oakville division will consist of both Burlington clubs as well as teams from Oakville and Milton.
Oshawa’s five-team division will feature squads from Cobourg, Kingston, Pickering, Stouffville and Whitby.
And the Toronto division will include the two Newmarket entrants as well as the Toronto Patriots, Markham Royals, North York Rangers and Orangeville Flyers.
All OJDL squads will play a minimum of 12 games, May through July. And they will all participate in a pair of Showcase Weekends, slated for May 19-21 in Cobourg and June 24-25 in Oshawa.
The first showcase will be held during the RBC Cup, the national Junior A tournament, which the Cobourg Cougars are hosting from May 13-21.
Clarke Named Humanitarian of the Year
The 19-year-old forward, who was in his third season with the Rangers, also was rewarded for his numerous off-ice charitable efforts.
Clarke was chosen as the OJHL’s Humanitarian of the Year.
For more than a decade now, Clarke, who is asthmatic, has been a spokesperson and ambassador for the Lung Association.
Clarke has also made a pair of trips to the Dominican Republic in recent years, volunteering with the Live Different organization. His efforts included helping to build houses and a school.
Clarke will also serve as an assistant coach for an under-14 Toronto hockey squad that will compete in a tournament in China this summer.
Spirit Volunteer Recognized
One of the OJHL’s longest serving volunteers has earned some recognition.
Lorna Burrows, who has assisted with the Stouffville Spirit for the past 15 years, was named as the league’s Volunteer of the Year.
Burrows, 76, co-ordinates the club’s game day operations and is also one of its most vocal fans in the stands.
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