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Flood damage forces BCHL to halt inter-conference play

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The rains have washed away inter-conference play in the B.C. Hockey League.

The highway situation ­continues to play havoc with the BCHL season as the road closures, mostly in the Interior, have meant the cancellation of all remaining out-of-conference games in the 2021-22 season.

The Victoria Grizzlies schedule was front-loaded with games against teams in the Interior Conference, both home and away, so the Grizzlies will have only one game affected by the cancellation of inter-conference play, a Feb. 11 date in which the Merritt Centennials were due to visit The Q Centre.

The postponed games will be made up with games within the Coastal and Interior Conferences. Even at that, numerous games between Interior Conference teams have also been ­postponed. The league said it will ­continue to revise the schedule in the coming weeks to make up ­postponed games later in the season.

The Grizzlies (11-9) will try to halt a three-game slide when they host the Surrey Eagles (8-9) tonight and Chilliwack Chiefs (9-6) on Saturday night at The Q Centre. Tonight’s game is the Grizzlies’ annual Teddy Bear Toss game so the team is asking all fans to bring a stuffed animal to the game and throw them on the ice after the Grizzlies’ first goal.

The Grizzlies will have three key forwards back on the ice tonight. Captain Ellis ­Rickwood returns from a one-game ­suspension while star rookie Matthew Wood is back from earning a silver medal at the Capital City Challenge, which featured the top Canadian U-17 players eligible for the 2023 NHL draft. And Connor Eddy is expected back after missing ­several games due to injury.