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  Prairie Gold:
Sports Heroes From Saskatchewan
 
 
Photo 1 of 9. | | |

Sandy Archer

Football's "Dean of Trainers" was born in Moose Jaw. His work began in physiotherapy in 1946. Six years later he started his long affiliation with athletic teams when he began working with the Regina Pats. For 14 years he was associated with hockey players, covering 3 Memorial Cup play-offs.

1951 saw Sandy begin his career as Head Trainer of the Saskatchewan Roughriders, a position he held proudly for 30 years. He taped, massaged, motivated, and was a miracle worker through seven Grey Cup play-offs and one championship. He was selected Head Trainer for the "West" in the 1976 and 1977 All-Star games.

Sandy brought to the league a level of expertise and professionalism in the field of sport medicine that is difficult to equal. Instrumental in the education of athletic trainers, he was a founding member of the Canadian Athletic Therapists Association, serving as Vice-president 1968-70, President 1971. He left a legacy to training that can be found today in the medical staffs of teams in the C.F.L.

Sandy initiated the first High School Trainers Credit Course.

His door was always open; participants large or small, amateur or professional, Sandy's advice was sought, respected, given and heeded. - He was the best!

Installed in the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame on June 16th, 1984.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 2 of 9. | | |

Ken Doraty

Ken Doraty - the one time "Mighty Atom" of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

In 1925 Ken played with Western Canada's first memorial cup winners - the Regina Pats. He turned pro with Portland, Oregon and was named to the Chicago Blackhawks roster in 1927.

The Toronto Maple Leafs obtained Ken in 1932. That season they played against the Boston Bruins for the championship. After 60 minutes of regular game time and 104 minutes and 46 seconds of overtime, Ken Doraty swept around the great defenseman, Eddie Shore, and shot the puck past goalie Tiny Thompson. The score 1-0 for Toronto. He was the leading goal-getter in this Canadian division Stanley Cup playoff. On January 16, 1934, Ken shot the fastest three goals ever scored in N.H.L. regular season play.

In later years, Ken Doraty, as coach took the Moose Jaw Canucks to the Memorial Cup finals. He moved to Regina as senior mentor and then returned to the Canucks fold to eventually become their president.

Installed in the Hall of Fame on April 1, 1978.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 3 of 9. | | |

Gerry James

Gerry James' legendary achievements in Canadian sports, as an athlete and builder, began in Winnipeg where his father, former Regina Roughrider, Eddie "Dynamite" James, played football for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Gerry's prowess in hockey was recognized early, as he was called up from the midget ranks to play with the Winnipeg Monarchs in the Memorial Cup in 1951 at the age of 16. The next year, Gerry signed to play football with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers and became the youngest player ever to play in the CFL. Thus began an amazing story in Canadian sport.

In the spring of 1955 James was a member of the Memorial Cup winning Toronto Marlboros junior hockey team and then signed a contract with the Toronto Maple Leafs to play with the NHL club after the football season ended in late 1955. Gerry James made history in 1959/60 when he became the only person to play in the Grey Cup final and the Stanley Cup final in the same season. James was a Grey Cup winner with the 1959 Blue Bombers, then jumped to the Leafs, who lost the Stanley Cup final to the Canadiens in 1960.

"Kid Dynamite" spent ten of his eleven years in the CFL with Winnipeg, the final year with the Saskatchewan Roughriders. He went to the Grey Cup six times, winning with Winnipeg in 1958, 1959, 1960 and 1962. He was awarded the Schenley Award as top Canadian in 1954 and 1957. He set numerous league records, at least five of which still stand, including most rushing touchdowns in a season (18 in 1957). He scored 645 points in the CFL and won the scoring title in 1957 and 1960. He rushed for over 1,000 yards in 1955 and 1957 and finished his career with 5,554 rushing yards. Gerry James joined his father in the Football Hall of Fame in 1989 and is also a member of the Manitoba Sports Hall of Fame and the Winnipeg Blue Bombers Hall of Fame.

James played five seasons for the Toronto Maple Leafs (1955-60), then turned to coaching. He coached in 1963/64 in Switzerland before returning to Saskatchewan. As a player/coach, Gerry steered the Yorkton Terriers Senior Hockey team to four consecutive Provincial Championships from 1966 to 1969. During his coaching career he was named All-star Coach three times and Coach of the Year twice. James coached teams at the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League (SJHL) and Western Hockey League (WHL) level over the next nineteen years, guiding young hockey players to provincial titles in 1983 (Melville Millionaires) and 1985 (Estevan Bruins), with the Bruins reaching the Western Centennial final. To the players under Gerry James' direction, he is known as a compassionate motivator who brings out the best in them, both on and off the ice. Gerry presently coaches a Special Olympics floor hockey team in Weyburn.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 4 of 9. | | |

Charles McCool

Charles W. McCool was the founder of the Saskatoon Wesleys hockey organization which fostered bantam midget, juvenile and junior teams from 1924 until 1953.

McCool was born in Ontario, came to Saskatoon as a reporter in 1914, enlisted in the Canadian services in the First World War and was decorated with a military cross, later achieved his law degree from Osgoode Hall in Toronto.

The Wesley teams were first formed from boys in the St. Thomas Wesley United Church area.

His bantam teams won two provincial championships; his midget teams won seven; his juvenile teams won five; his junior B team won one; and his junior A team won six.

The Wesley juniors were western finalists in 1931 and 1935 and another good club, the 1936 Wesleys, went to the Memorial Cup final before losing to West Toronto Nationals, 5-1 and 4-2, in a two-game, total-goal series. Clint Smith, Charlie Mason, Peggy O'Neill, Doug Bentley and Max Bentley were among National Leaguers who started on McCool teams. McCool served many years on the executive of the Saskatchewan Amateur Hockey Association.

As a lawyer, McCool concentrated his efforts on rehabilitating youthful offenders, directing some of them onto teams and into clubs where they would develop new interests. He was also active on the public school board, the senate of the University of Saskatchewan, promoted the boys' parliamentary concept and founded Oliver Lodge.

McCool died in Saskatoon at the age of 68 on Nov. 14, 1959.

Text courtesy of Ned Powers.


Charlie McCool arrived in Saskatoon in 1914 at the age of twenty three and lived in that city until his death in 1959. Mr. McCool was a complete citizen and an important influence in his community as a long time member of the collegiate board, a member of the senate of the University of Saskatchewan, he was active in politics and of his church, St. Thomas Wesley United Church.

Wesley hockey teams under Charlie McCool's sponsorship and guidance represented the City of Saskatoon in the Juvenile and junior divisions from 1924-53. The Wesley Juniors were Western Canadian finalists in 1931 and 1935. They represented Western Canada in the 1931 Memorial Cup finals which they lost to the Sudbury Wolves. Many prominent men in all walks of life are graduates of the Wesley teams. Charlie McCool served many years on the executive of the Saskatchewan Amateur Hockey Association and was also prominent in his support of the Saskatoon Hilltops Football Club in the 1930's.

Installed in the Hall of Fame on May 22, 1967.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame.

Date: 1947.

Photographer: Charmbury's Studio.

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Photo 5 of 9. | | |

Charlie Rayner

Born in Sutherland on August 11th, 1920, Chuck played his minor hockey in Saskatoon capped off by a Saskatchewan midget championship in 1935. After a year with the 1936-37 Saskatoon Wesleys, Rayner moved on to the Kenora Thistles but returned when the Wesleys put together a strong club for the 1938-39 campaign. The Wesleys folded however, and Rayner went back to Kenora.

In the spring of 1940, Rayner helped the Thistles get to the Memorial Cup Final but they lost to the Oshawa Generals. In 1940-41 Chuck turned pro with the Springfield Indians but did play 12 games for the parent New York Americans. He played with the Americans again in the 1941-42 season then spent the rest of his pro career with the New York Rangers. He retired in 1954. In 425 regular games Rayner recorded 33 shut-outs. He won the Hart Trophy in 1950 and was selected three times to the NHL second all-star team.

He was inducted into the NHL Hall of Fame in 1973. In 1985, he was named to the Manitoba Hockey Hall of Fame. In 1967 he was named to the Saskatoon Sports Hall of Fame.

Text courtesy of Ned Powers

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Photo 6 of 9. | | |

1973-74 Regina Pats

It was in May 1974, in Calgary, that the Regina Pats won the Memorial Cup as the top junior hockey team in Canada.

After a schedule of ten exhibition and seventy regular season games, and a tour of Sweden at Christmas. playing top Swedish teams, the Pats made the play-offs with little difficulty.

In post-season play they were victors over Saskatoon, Swift Current and Calgary, in that order, before heading to the Memorial Cup championship tournament as western representatives.

In the round-robin the Pats won against the St. Catherine's Blackhawks but were narrowly beaten by the Quebec Ramparts. However, they found themselves in the final championship game against Quebec, and were able to turn the tables, winning the contest and the cup by a score off 7-4.

Greg Joly was named outstanding player in the tournament, which led to him being the number one draft choice in the N.H L that year.

Winning the Memorial Cup was a team effort, and the championship belonged to the team.

Some off the individual players, like Joly, have since gone on to build successful NHL careers. These include Dennis Sobchuk, Ed Staniowaki, and Clark Gillies, now captain off the New York Islanders.

The coach off the team was Bob Turner who, during his own NHL career, played on five Stanley Cup teams with the Montreal Canadians.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 7 of 9. | | |

Al Ritchie

Born in Ontario, Al came to Regina with the Ritchie family before the First World War. He was active in baseball and lacrosse.

He was coach of the Regina Roughriders in the swashbuckling days of senior football when they ruled the west year after year. He coached both junior football and hockey teams of the Regina Pats, and is the only man in history to have won national championships in both.

In 1965 he was named to Canada's Sports Hall of Fame. Six years earlier, Al was honored at the Grey Cup Dinner at Vancouver for his contribution to football.

Ritchie's team won 56 consecutive games and nine western championships but never the Grey Cup. Al insisted on challenging the East for the cup when the East was loaded with football talent. He coached four straight Grey Cup losers, 1929-32, but it was his persistence and fighting spirit that laid the groundwork for the present East-West rivalry.

He played a major role in organizing the Regina Pats, a junior football club, and his interest spilled over into hockey. He coached the Pats and they won the Memorial Cup in 1925. After his success in 1925, Ritchie moved to senior ranks but was instrumental in Pats' march to a second Memorial Cup victory in 1928. He won the Memorial Cup again in 1930.

At time of installation citation read October 31,1966.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 8 of 9. | | |

Bob Turner

Bob Turner honed his hockey skills on the outdoor rinks of Regina and played all of his minor hockey in the Queen City. In 1950, he was a member of the Regina Pat midget team that won the Provincial Championship. He made the jump to the junior ranks the next year with the Regina Pats of the Western Junior Hockey League (WJHL), who came second to the Guelph Biltmores at the Memorial Cup in 1952. Bob played with the Pats for three years, was Captain of the team during the 1953-54 season and named MVP of the WJHL the same year.

Turner began his "pro" career in the fall of 1954 by joining the Shawinigan Fall Cataracts of the Quebec League, who won the Duke of Edinburgh Trophy that year, the highest prize in the minor professional league in Canada. Bob was called up to their parent club, the Montreal Canadiens, for the 1955-56 season. Bob Turner was a skilled defenceman and fierce competitor for the Canadiens for five seasons - 1956 through 1960 - winning the Stanley Cup in each of those years. Bob Turner is one of only twelve players to be a member of five consecutive Stanley Cup championship teams. Bob played three seasons with the Chicago Blackhawks - 1961 to 1963 - and finished his career with the Buffalo Bisons of the American Hockey League (AHL) in 1964. Turner played in five NHL All-Star games during his professional career.

Bob did not leave hockey after his retirement. He returned home to become coach of the Regina Pats of the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League in 1965. In nine successful years as head coach between 1965 and 1976, Turner led the Regina Pats to the Memorial Cup twice, finishing second in 1969 and winning the tournament in 1974.

Installed in the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame and Museum on June 18, 1994.

Text courtesy of the Saskatchewan Sports Hall of Fame

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Photo 9 of 9. | | |

We hope that you have enjoyed reading about some of Saskatchewan's sports heroes.

If you have a photograph of someone or a team listed in Prairie Gold that we do not have a photo for and are willing to donate it, please contact us.

Due to their nature and sometimes ambiguous origin the photographs seen here and those on file at the Local History Room are continuously being updated with new information. Some of this information comes from dedicated research done by Local History staff. However some of the biggest 'breaks' have come from the public... Those that remember the people, places and events in the photo are our biggest informational resource and we ask that if you have any information about the photos to contact the Local History Room at lhstaff@saskatoonlibrary.ca or phone (306) 975-7578.

Come and visit the Local History Room the next time you are at the Frances Morrison Library.

Thank you.

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