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Kodiaks football season opening game postponed, will play next weekend in Ahtahkakoop

The Creighton Kodiaks football team will have to wait a little bit longer to hold their home opener.
S36 Kodiaks Football 3
Creighton Kodiaks players hoist their helmets together at the end of practice earlier this month.

The Creighton Kodiaks football team will have to wait a little bit longer to hold their home opener.

The team's first game in almost two years, originally set to be held in Creighton Sept. 15 against the Senator Myles Venne School (SMVS) Huskies from Lac La Ronge Indian Band, was postponed earlier this week. The decision was made by local school officials in an attempt to avoid possible COVID-19 risk.

As of Sept. 14, 388 people have active cases of COVID-19 in Saskatchewan's far north east health zone, where both SMVS and Creighton Community School are located. That total shows 46 new cases in the last 24 hours, including 22 new cases (192 active) in the far north east 2 zone which covers Creighton, Denare Beach, Flin Flon, Sask., Pelican Narrows and Sandy Bay.

The Kodiaks are now set to open their season Sept. 22 on the road, playing in Ahtahkakoop Cree Nation near Prince Albert against the Ahtahkakoop Titans.

"I have addressed the players and they will continue to work hard in the up coming practices and hopefully get to play in our game next week in Ahtakakoop," reads an online statement from Kodiaks coach Ryan Karakochuk.

This year's Northern Saskatchewan Football League (NSFL) schedule was originally drawn up to include only three teams - the Kodiaks, the Huskies and Titans, playing a four-game season with a home game and a road game with both other teams.

At first, league stalwarts like the Charlebois Community School Voyageurs in Cumberland House and the Hector Thiboutot Community School T-Wolves in Sandy Bay would not start the season. COVID-19 policies from Northern Lights School Division, which administers both schools, would only allow teams to play if they had cleared a certain percentage of players vaccinated.

Cumberland House has since cleared that bar and will play games this year - whether or not Sandy Bay will hit that mark is unknown.