No cases of COVID-19 were detected from the 245 tests completed in advance of the hockey season opening for the Alberta division of the Western Hockey League (WHL).
That means the players and staff of Edmonton Oil Kings, Calgary Hitmen, Lethbridge Hurricanes, Medicine Hat Tigers, and Red Deer Rebels have received the all-clear to start on-ice practices.
Testing was administered twice to all members of the team delegations from Feb. 6 through Feb. 12. All were tested once upon arrival and a second time after a mandatory quarantine period in the club centre. As a result of no positive tests, the teams are now in a position to commence with team on-ice practices.
Alberta divisional play is set to start on Feb. 26, and the schedule has set for the first two weeks of the 24-game season.
The Medicine Hat Tigers have two Cochrane players in their lineup; forward Caleb Willms and defenceman Damon Agyeman.
The Tigers open their season with a home-and-home series against the Red Deer Rebels on Feb. 26-27, followed by a pair against the Edmonton Oil Kings on Mar. 5-6.
Enhanced screening for all WHL players, billets, team staff, and officials will take place on a daily basis, including regular temperature screenings as well as symptom monitoring through the WHL Athlete RMS Mobile Application.
Masks must be worn by all WHL players at all times with the exception of when participating on ice for games and practices. WHL coaches will be required to wear masks at all times, including while conducting practice and while behind the bench during games.
The WHL has also received approval for play to proceed with its American division and its eastern division that includes Saskatchewan and Manitoba teams.
No spectators will be allowed at the games. Details are expected to be released soon on the live-streaming of games.