Both teams in the 1942-43 Memorial Cup final carried a lot on their shoulders as they squared off in Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto.
The favoured Oshawa Generals, the biggest name in junior hockey, were in the national final for the fifth time in seven years, winning twice. The Winnipeg Rangers represented the MJHL, a league that had taken the Dominion title five times in the previous eight seasons. To get to Toronto, the Rangers defeated Fort William Hurricane-Rangers and then Saskatoon Quakers.
The ten players Coach Bob Kinnear chose for his line-up were: goalkeeper Doug Jackson, Capt. Bill Boorman, Jack Irvine and Ben Juzda on defense and forwards Church Russell, Eddie Kullman (going by Coleman), Ritchie McDonald, Joe Peterson, Bill Vickers and Cal Gardner. Not on the ice were Frank Mathers (broken ankle), Bill Tindall, Stan Warecki, Tommy Fowler, Jack Taggert, George Mundrick, Spence Tatchell, Gus Schwartz and spare goalkeeper Joe Peters. A. U. Chipman was president, Henry Borger, VP. Also in Toronto were GM Scotty Oliver, trainer, Johnny Gross, executive member Baldy Northcott and mascot Vern Smith. Irvine and Taggert from St. James were injury replacements as was Gardner from Esquires and Fowler who started with Winnipeg Monarchs.
Winnipeg edged the Generals 6-5 in the opener with Coleman recording two goals and three assists and Russell scoring twice. Oshawa rebounded to win game two with no trouble and led by former Ranger Bill Ezinicki’s hat trick took the next game 5-3 to lead the series.
Instead of folding up the Rangers kept skating and won game four, 7-4. Irvine and Vickers each scored twice and Jackson was spectacular in goal. Game five was a similar story resulting in a 7-3 Winnipeg victory. Gardner and Russell each scored twice with Coleman contributing a goal and three helpers.
Rangers downed Generals 6-3 to win the Memorial Cup in six games. Coleman scored the first three goals and Gardner added the final two, but it was Selkirk’s Peterson playing with a cast on his left wrist who stickhandled through the entire Oshawa team to score the fourth and what proved to be the winning goal.
PHOTO: Back Row (l-r): Vernon Smith (Mascot), Joe Peters, Frank Mathers, Ben Juzda, Jack Irvine, Bill Tindall, Stan Warecki, Ritchie McDonald, Capt. Bill Boorman, George Mundrick, Tom Fowler, Cal Gardner, Jack Taggert, Bill Vickers, Joe Peterson, Church Russell, Eddie (Kullman) Coleman, Doug Jackson. Front Row (l-r): Johnny Gross (Trainer), Henry Borger (VP), Arthur U. Chipman (President), Baldy Northcott (Executive), Bob Kinnear (Coach). Missing: Spence Tatchell, Gus Schwartz and Scotty Oliver (GM).