Ah, playoff season. Those of you that watch the Stanley Cup playoffs know that it’s just getting started…or it’s been started for a few weeks now. Clearly, I don’t watch. Please forgive me for this lapse. I just finished living and breathing hockey and need a break.
With Initiation hockey (that’s the 4-6 year old group), the season finishes mid-March and there are no playoffs. It’s just the one last fun day and then it’s all over. For Novice hockey (the 7-9 year old stage that directly follows Initiation), they play games all season and then, after March Break, the playoff season begins.
At least with our league. I suspect others follow a similar pattern, give or take a week or two.
When we moved into Novice hockey I had no idea what to expect. And frankly, we didn’t make it out of the round robin stage, so I really didn’t have much of an idea what happens after that.
This year, Boy#1’s team made it to the finals, so I learned everything and am sharing with you. Let’s take some of the unknown out of the playoff season, shall we?
First round is the Round Robin. In our league, the kids play three games in round robin play. And because the league is fairly large, playoffs have the league split into two separate divisions. This ensures that the kids were on a more level playing field. So we played against three teams and they were all well matched in skill. For our league, a win in round robin equals two points, a tie one and a loss is 0. Now for us, and most of the teams in our division it seems, of the three games we won two and tied one, giving us 5 points. So on we move to semi finals.
In Semi Final there are no points. It’s win or lose. If you win, you move on to the finals. If you lose, the season is over. Pretty straightforward. It is my understanding that there is no tie. So if you finish the three periods and are tied, you go into overtime. Those that win go on to the finals.
Ah the Finals. This is it. They played hard and this is as far as they can go. It’s a big deal when you’re 8. The very last game of house league hockey season. It’s a battle between first place and second place. And it’s really cool to watch.
The winners get a banner and a medal. Turns out, for second place, you still get a medal that says “Finalist”. There may not be the same celebration for second place, but as far as I was concerned watching my boy accept his second place medal is definitely a highlight for me. The banner, that’s for the rink. The medal and the memories, those are for him.
And with that we finished out our season. There were tears. There were goodbyes. Not forever, just until next season.
Only 5 months to go.
See you all at the rink,