KITCHENER -- Some Waterloo Region minor hockey games have been put off pause following the new public health recommendations.

For the next two weeks, teams in Kitchener, Waterloo, and Cambridge can only compete internally against each other.

 Alliance Hockey, the organization that oversees minor boys’ hockey in Waterloo Region, made the decision to stop the next few games in hopes of reducing the spread of COVID-19.

“It’s an opportunity to take a pause and revaluate,” said Tony Martindale, the executive director of the organization.

This marks the second time external games have been cancelled since organization hockey was welcomed back to local rings about two months ago.

“Each player is expected to do their best to stay six feet apart,” said Rolland Cyr, general manager of Kitchener Minor Hockey. “There are penalties for those who make contact with other players.”

The local games already scheduled with safety precautions in place are now four-on-four.

“Play teams within our own association in a fashion where kids can use the skills they’re learning in practice to put them in play in a safe environment,” said Cyr.

Kitchener’s last minor boys’ hockey game is on Nov. 4 before external games are then paused.

“It is often in the pre and post play settings where spread among players in families have been reported,” said Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang, Waterloo Region Acting Medical Officer of Health. “Avoid carpooling with those outside of your household, do not share equipment or gear, participate only on one team, and play outside when possible.”

The Minor Hockey Alliance of Ontario says it will meet on Nov. 18 to review the next steps of resuming external competition.