SIJHL awaiting expansion bids

The SIJHL has discussed league expansion next season with an undisclosed town, but nothing has been formalized yet.
Formal meaning no town has given the league an application and a cheque for its fees, said SIJHL president J.P. Heino, though they are hoping to hear from all those interested in joining.
“We’re going to try and expand as soon and as fast as we can,” he remarked.
The league has no set deadline for expansion, he noted.
“As long as we can accommodate them,” said Heino, adding it becomes more difficult once the season schedule is set because of the limit to available ice time.
“Most teams have to confirm with their arenas.”
League executives will be getting together in August to discuss expansion, any rule changes they want to make, and the direction of the league.
The meeting also will include discussion on the possibility of exhibition games against Minnesota teams.
As for the season that just came to a close with the Aurora Tigers winning the Royal Bank Cup in Grande Prairie, Alta. on Sunday, Heino said he was pleased with the quality of the hockey.
“I think overall the league went very well,” he remarked. “We had two bad weekends where we had a number of suspensions.
“I thought our team in the Dudley Hewitt Cup [the Fort William First Nation North Stars] did very well,” he added. “I think, hockey wise, we’re on par with most of the other leagues in Canada.”
Heino also said he had heard good reviews of the SIJHL from players who had played elsewhere and then returned to the league.
The SIJHL will be handing out 10 player awards—voted on by the coaches—at the NorWester Hotel in Thunder Bay on Sunday, May 30.
Heino said he knew Thunder players had received nominations for some of the awards, but he hadn’t seen the final list yet.