At the first annual meeting of the newly born Canadian Amateur Hockey Association, held in Winnipeg in December of 1915, the challenge system of determining the Allan Cup winner was discarded in favour of a playoff system of East versus West Champions. One of the last Manitoban teams to capture the Allan Cup under what appears to be the old challenge system was the 1915-16 61st Battalion. It would mark the second consecutive year that Manitoba would win the coveted national amateur crown.
As would be the case for the generation affected by World War II, service teams supplied most of the senior hockey of the day. The 61st Battalion captured the Pattison Trophy (Winnipeg League) by defeating the defending champion Winnipeg Monarchs, thus earning the right to defend the Allan Cup. They defeated Fort William and Regina, in Winnipeg. The two game total goal series against Regina was won 13-3 by scores of 5-1 and 8-2. Vince Leah wrote that they had “a superb side with Bobby, Alf and ‘Crutchy’ Morrison, Joe Simpson, Roddy Smith, Jocko Anderson, Alex Romeril and ‘Spunk’ Sparrow. These fellows were in demand when the war ended for professional competition”. This appears to be the last time the Allan Cup championship would take to use this format.
ROSTER: Back Row L-R: Lt. J.D. Moulden, Lt. J.A. Clark-Mgr., Pte. “Spunk” Sparrow-Spare, Major N.B. MacLean, Capt. W.A. Simpson-Sec’y/Treas. Front Row L-R: Pte. Bobby Morrison-Goal, Pte. Johnny Mitchell-Spare, Cpl. Joe Simpson-Cover Point, Pte. Alf Morrison-Rover, Lt.-Col. F.J. Murray, Pte. “Crutchy” Morrison-Right Wing, Pte. Roddy Smith-Point, Sgt. Jocko Anderson-Centre and Pte. Alex Romeril-Left Wing.