OMHA announces new format for hockey championships

The Ontario Minor Hockey Association has announced a new format for  2022 provincial championships.

The ultimate prize in Ontario Minor  Hockey is winning the red hat that is  given to championship teams. 

Over 350 teams take part in the championships with more than 850 games tak ng place at centres around the province.

Leading up to the OMHA Championship weekends, there will be new league  championships in each area. League  playoffs will now turn into regional  qualifying showdown to see who moves  on to compete. 

“Our players, parents and volunteers  have endured so much during the pandemic,” said Ian Taylor, Executive Director of the OMHA. “We have been  planning this for months and believe  this is a great way to give them something special to look forward to and to  ensure all our participants can be involved in more meaningful hockey right  up to March and beyond.” 

At the beginning of the season, each  League was assigned a Tier based on  the categories of teams playing within  the League. 

This process was used for  the purpose of determining the number  of teams within each tier of the League  compared with the overall number of  teams from across the OMHA. 

This determined the number of teams  that the league would send to each of  the OMHA championships. 

Round robin play will occur on the first  two days, with the Semi-Finals and Championships being decided on the Sunday. 

This removes the elimination-style series and keeps more teams playing  during the year for a longer period of  time.

The format has been designed  with players, coaches, and parents in  mind and minimizes travel time. 

OMHA championships will take place  over three weekends in March and April  and hosted in five locations around the  province. 

Those locations include Barrie, Kingston, Oakville, Whitby, and  Windsor. 

Specific schedules will be released  closer to the dates. 

The weekends will feature sponsor  activations and gifts, excited crowds,  official merchandise and live-streaming  of games. 

Round-robin style play will occur on  the first two days of the tournament  with semi-finals and championships being decided on the Sunday. 

Consistent game-play formats will be  followed at the U14 level and below, as  well as U15, and above, regarding period lengths and floods. 

The championships are sponsored by  the Egg Farmers of Ontario.

 “Since 2018, Egg Farmers of Ontario  (EFO) has been a proud supporter of the  OMHA and are excited to continue that  partnership through our involvement in  the new OMHA Championship Weekends,” said Scott Helps, EFO Chair.  “All teams should take pride in the hard  work and perseverance that it takes to  win the ultimate prize in minor hockey.  These new steps to win the Red Hats  will make it more exciting than ever.” 

The OMHA Championships will take  place over three weekends: March 25 –  17, April 1 – 3, and April 8 – 10, 2022