RCN sports history: Navy takes Maritime hockey title
By Ryan Melanson,
Down two games in a best of five series, the Halifax Navy team from Stadacona went on to beat the Campbellton Tigers in three straight games to win the Maritime Intermediate hockey championship June 13, 1953 in Halifax.
The New Brunswick club, led by the former pro Bud Hellyer, were heavy favourites to win the title after beating the sailors in the first two games of the finals. Over the weekend of June 11, however, the sailors triumphed by scores of 8-1 and 5-2. On June 13, in front of a crowd of more than 2,000, they racked up a 7-3 victory to clinch the title. Goal scorers in the final game included LS Rowan Carroll, AB Arnold Riches, AB Joseph Peron and PO Ken Guertin.
The Stadacona team also set scoring records through the earlier part of the tournament, with some games even being called early due to the Navy’s insurmountable lead.
This month in RCN sports history
1964 – A muscular, mild-mannered sailor by the name LS Frederick Desrosiers became the new Canadian amateur welterweight boxing champion, and earned the right to represent his weight class at the 1964 Olympic games in Tokyo. Stationed at HMCS Naden, LS Desrosiers won the Canadian title and an Olympic Games berth with a series of clear-cut victories in Vancouver in late June. Making the achievement even more impressive is the fact that the boxer hung up his gloves six years earlier, and resumed training only a few months before clinching the championship. He credited his former neighbour Fred Fouty, a former RCN chief petty officer and boxer himself, with introducing him to his first punching bag and getting him started with the sport.
1987 – The final tally of the past year’s Cock of the Fleet competition once again revealed that the fittest sailors on the east coast hung their caps in HMCS Assiniboine. The ship took wins, many of them decisive, in base basketball, softball, volleyball, squash, broomball and floor hockey, as well as the Atlantic Region softball title over the past year. This marked an unprecedented fourth year in a row that the COTF trophy was handed to Assiniboine, and Cmdre John Harwood joked it should be renamed the Assiniboine cup.
1996 – CFB Halifax civilian firefighter Brent MacDonald brought back three gold medals and one silver from the World Firefighter Games in Edmonton. Competing in the Senior Masters category, MacDonald won gold in the 5,000 metre, the 6.7 kilometre cross country, and the half-marathon, where he ran a personal best 1:14:35. He won silver in the 1,500 metre, and placed fourth in the 400 metre. MacDonald said he was never much of an athlete, but took up running about 13 years earlier to lose weight after he quit smoking, and found a love for the sport. MacDonald said lots of support at home helped him get to the games in Edmonton, specifically shouting out deputy fire chief Don Howard for his help.