Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The Memorial Cup: A history . . . 1919

Regina Patricias vs. University of Toronto Schools
at Toronto (Arena Gardens)

The Regina Patricias, having eliminated the Winnipeg Lutherans in the Western Canadian final for the Abbott Memorial Cup on March 10, 1919, were off to the Memorial Cup.
The Patricias won the two-game, total-goal series with Winnipeg 8-5, taking the second game 3-1 in front of 1,935 fans at the Regina Arena.
In the meantime, the University of Toronto Schools, backstopped by goaltender Joe Sullivan, who would go on to become a well-known physician and senator, were wrapping up the Eastern Canadian championship, whipping the visiting Montreal Melvilles 8-2 in a sudden-death game on March 17.
(Sullivan's son Frank would have a lengthy minor league career, and would get into six NHL games over the 1949-50 and 1952-53 seasons with the Toronto Maple Leafs and one each with the Chicago Blackhawks in 1954-55 and 1955-56 and Toronto Maple Leafs in the early 1950s. Frank's son Peter would be a key member of three WHA championship Winnipeg Jets teams and would play two seasons with the Jets after they were admitted to the NHL.)
And so it was that the 1919 Memorial Cup, a two-game, total-goal affair, was scheduled for Toronto, with games on March 19 and 22 at Arena Gardens on Mutual Street.
W.J. Finlay, sports editor of the Winnipeg Free Press, reported prior to the first game: “Toronto fans are greatly worked up over their juniors and they are just a little afraid that their favorites are going to get beaten.
“However, it looks like a great game and, in our opinion, should be in doubt right to the finish.”
It was anything but in doubt as the U of T opened with a 14-3 victory, causing Finlay to write: "Travelling at a dizzy pace from start to finish and uncorking team play that was revelation to the western fans, the University of Toronto Schools nifty young hockey machine cantered through the Regina Patricians in such a commanding style that they not only swamped the westerners 14-3 but outclassed them from stem to stern ...”
Toronto, coached by Frank Carroll, a noted coach in his time, led 2-0 after the first period and 7-2 after the second.
As Finlay noted: "The Toronto outfit has the six-man hockey system as used by the professionals down to a science and they have the ability to make use of the system to perfection. Coached by Frank Carroll, the noted Toronto professional pilot, the boys have developed team play that was really pretty to watch.”
Forwards Don Jeffreys and Jack Aggett scored six goals each for Toronto, with defenceman Dunc Munroe adding the other two. Regina got goals from two wingers
Laudas Dutkowski, who was known as Duke and who, late in his life, dropped the ‘k’ from his surname, and S. Conrad and defenceman M.A. Wingham.
It's worth noting that the game was an hour and 15 minutes late in starting, as The Canadian Press reported, "to allow the fans to greet the 4th C.M.R., the first Toronto unit to come home in a body.”
The Canadian Press also reported: "It was not known tonight whether the Patricias would default the second game on Saturday night. It is a moral certainty that they cannot pull down the lead.”
Give the Patricias credit
they showed up for the second game on March 22. This time Toronto posted a 15-5 victory to win the series by a combined score of 29-8.
"Though the score was trebled on them the Pats played much better hockey than they did on the opening night and the score is no indication of the play,” wrote Finlay.
Getting glowing reviews was Mordecai Brown, the Regina goaltender who it was said was only 16 years of age.
Toronto, which led 8-4 and 10-4 at the period breaks, got five goals from Steve Greey, four from Munroe, and three each from Jeffreys and Aggett.
For the record, the Memorial Cup-winning goal was Toronto's ninth one in the opening game. It came from Aggett early in the third period.
It's also worth noting that Lou Marsh, a noted sports writer with the Toronto Star, officiated both games, while Finlay
yes, the same Free Press sports editor teamed with Marsh for the second game.
As Finlay's report noted: "Two sporting scribes, Billy Finlay of the Free Press, Winnipeg, and Lou Marsh, of the Toronto Star, handled the game, which was very clean.“

NEXT: 1920 (Selkirk Juniors vs. Toronto Canoe Club Paddlers)

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