Blackfalds Bulldogs captain Brett Meerman just misses a backhand chance during a regular-season game last year against the Calgary Canucks. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

Blackfalds Bulldogs captain Brett Meerman just misses a backhand chance during a regular-season game last year against the Calgary Canucks. (Photo by BYRON HACKETT/Advocate Staff)

AJHL announces regular-season schedule

Each team will play 60 games

The Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL) has announced the schedule for its exhibition games and the 2022-23 regular season.

This year all 16 teams will play two games on opening weekend on Sept. 16 and 17 and will play a 60-game regular season.

To open the season both central Alberta teams, the Blackfalds Bulldogs and the Olds Grizzlys will face off on Friday, Sept. 16 in Olds at 7 p.m.

Meanwhile, on Saturday, Sept. 17 the Olds Grizzlys will head to Calgary to play the Canucks at the Ken Bracko Arena. And the Bulldogs will be in Canmore to play the Eagles at Canmore Recreation Centre at 7 p.m. The Bulldogs won’t play their first home game in the regular season until Sept. 23 at 7 p.m. against the Camrose Kodiaks.

The Bulldogs’ first exhibition game will be in Drayton Valley on Aug. 30 and the Grizzlys will be in Spruce Grove on Sept. 1.

All teams will play 16 interlock games against the other division and two at the AJHL Showcase.

The 16th Annual AJHL Showcase was awarded to Blackfalds and will take place from Sept. 29th to Oct. 2 at the Eagles Builders Centre. The showcase brings coaches and scouts from the National Hockey League, NCAA, and Canadian universities.

From Dec. 11 to 17 will be the 2022 World Junior A Challenge in Cornwall, Ont. and is an annual U20 IIHF tournament.

The 2023 CJHL Prospects Game will be held in January with a location yet to be determined. Players who take part will be selected by NHL Central Scouting.

The playoffs will begin on March 10 and the Centennial Cup to happen in May in Portage La Prairie, Man.

New to the league this year will be a four-man officiating crew in the regular season and the playoffs. They will also implement a pilot program for video reviews on goals across several arenas in the AJHL.

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