The Chaos junior female hockey team will be the first Cochrane junior team hitting the ice this Friday night at home with an exhibition game against the Calgary Jags.
The puck drops at 7:30 p.m. in Totem One arena of the SLS Family Sports Centre
It's the first of a home-and-home series against the Jags, with the two facing off at the Max Bell Centre on Saturday.
Head coach Derek Loomer says the team is anxious to size up their competition in the Alberta Junior Female Hockey League (AJFHL).
"We're really excited to get back on the ice with some real competition," says Loomer. ""The girls have been itching to get into a game situation, and we're looking forward to seeing how the new prospects and team are starting to fit together right from the start."
After that, the Chaos will play the balance of their October games at home at Totem One. They once again face the Jags on Oct. 9, then play a pair of games against their archrival Calgary Titans on Oct. 25 and 30. They're all currently slated to be exhibition games, but that may change, says Loomer. One may become a regular-season game.
The team's roster has basically been finalized.
"We're going to carry a couple extra this year because with the current restrictions, there's going to be no affiliates. So, we have a couple of extra players on the roster to make sure we have enough to carry us all the way through the season."
The players have enjoyed working hard at the practices leading up to their first game.
"You can just tell that they're really happy to be back at the rink, back together and getting on the rink and doing something that feels more normal than what most of their lives are right now."
The AJFHL remains nine teams strong this season, with four teams in the south and five teams in the north.
Unlike past seasons, they won't be playing an interlocking schedule with the north division. It won't be until the north and south champions are determined that they'll meet in a provincial final.
The Chaos has appeared in two provincial finals. Last season, they were in the middle of the south division final against the Calgary Titans when the league was halted by COVID-19.