PA Minor Football spring season underway

The Bantam Prince Albert River Riders went undefeated in KFL play last season. Photo from PA Minor Football Association.

The weather has turned to spring and Prince Albert Minor Football is back on the gridiron.

The 6-a-side Spring Football program began a couple weeks ago at the beginning of May. Bantam head coach Joey Hemsworth says the spring program allows for players to experiment with different positions.

“We just try to get the kids back out and get back into football. This is just six on six football so it’s not 12 or 12 like the fall, but it gets the kids out. It’s kind of like a little training camp (with) a lot more field to work so kids can play different positions.

“It’s good for the kids. Maybe they don’t get the ball all the time in 12 man. They can play a different position. They can play defence or offence. It gets the kids out and gets them excited for the fall season.”

The Bantam program with Prince Albert Minor Football is coming off a championship season last fall. The River Riders had an undefeated season on route to a Kinsmen Football League title.

A few players from that team have returned for the spring to play for Hemsworth once again. He says he has noticed quite a bit of growth in the returning players.

“You can tell that they’ve improved, just over the short bit and then they’re kind of taking charge as leaders out there. We got a lot of kids coming up from Pee Wee this year, so that’s good. Those kids that played for me last year can be leaders and show the new kids kind of what our programs all about.”

PA Minor Football is hosting a spring football jamboree at their practice field next to Crescent Heights Arena on Branion Drive next weekend when they will welcome teams from Hafford, Big River and Clavet.

Hemsworth says the players are excited to face some outside competition.

“It’s always exciting and it’s a great day. We cook burgers and there’s always a handful of teams from out of town. They get tired of banging into each other all month. So now they get to play other teams, and I know it’s exciting. It’s more controlled scrimmages, you know, we kind of ref ourselves and our coaches are in the huddle. It’s a little bit more relaxed than the fall.”