A 20-year-old junior hockey player reportedly collapsed after an intermission during a preseason game and eventually died in the locker room according to reports.

The hockey player was identified as Eli Palfreyman. He collapsed during the first intermission of the Ayr Centennials’ preseason tournament game at the North Dumfries Community Complex, the Toronto Sun reported. Efforts to revive the 20-year-old forward from Cambridge Ontario were made but failed.

As of this writing, the actual cause of the death of Palfreyman has yet to be revealed. The Centennial organization stated that they will not speculate on the cause of death out of respect for the family’s right to privacy.

“We are asking for your prayers and support for Eli’s family and each of our players,” Centennials’ Vice President Brian Shantz said in a statement. “Our Centennials organization and the community of Ayr are in mourning. Eli had the best care from our medical staff and quick response from the ambulatory staff.”

Palfreyman was named team captain for the Ayr Centennials for the coming season before the unfortunate incident. The 20-year-old player was entering his second season with the team.

“It’s an honor to wear the C,” Palfreyman said after he was named captain on Friday. “Me coming back this year — my final year — as the captain, words don’t explain how honored I am to be in this position.”

The 20-year-old was a 12th-round draft pick of the Peterborough Petes in the Ontario Hockey League Draft in 2018.

The GOJHL postponed all games set for Wednesday and Thursday following Palfreyman’s death.

Also, North Dumfries Township Mayor Sue Foxton ordered flags at the arena to be flown at half-mast. Teams across the junior hockey landscape also paid tribute to Palfreyman.

“Our deepest sympathies go out to Eli’s family and all of his teammates and staff with Ayr,” Peterborough Petes general manager Michael Oke said in a statement.

“Gone from our sight but never our hearts,” the Atlanta Madhatters, Palfreyman’s former team, stated. “With tears and profound sadness, we offer our deepest condolences to his family and those that were blessed to be his teammates.”

Hockey [Representation Image]
Hockey [Representation Image] Photo by Taylor Friehl on Unsplash

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