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Frontenacs 50th

March 27, 2013

Frontenacs logoToday’s installment in a daily series that recalls the story of the 1962-63 Kingston Frontenacs, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of their Eastern Professional Hockey League championship season:

Fifty years ago today, Wednesday, March 27, 1963

Kingston sets a league record but fails to clinch first place, despite a 5-5 tie with the Wolves in Sudbury. The tie gives the league-leading Frontenacs 92 points for the season, breaking the league record of 91 set by Hull-Ottawa in 1960-61. In St. Louis, meanwhile, the Canadiens lose for the second night in a row to the last-place Braves, 5-4. The Frontenacs go into the final weekend of the season with a six-point lead over Hull-Ottawa, which has three games left to play.

The Whig-Standard touts Saturday’s game at the Community Centre between the Frontenacs and Canadiens as “the biggest EPHL battle ever.”

In Sudbury, Don Blackburn’s 42nd goal of the season, with less than five minutes remaining in the game, knotted the score for the Frontenacs, who trailed 3-1 after the first period and 3-2 after the second, but a fluke goal by the Wolves and an apparent Kingston goal that was disallowed were also instrumental to the outcome.

On the former, a shot by Sudbury’s Dave Richardson hit the stick of Kingston defenceman Ken Stephanson 25 feet in front of the net and flew crazily into the air. As players stood around, the Whig-Standard reported, the puck fluttered over Bruce Gamble’s shoulder and into the net. Later, Harry Sinden appeared to have scored for Kingston at the 12-minute mark of the third period but the goal judge said the shot hit the goal post. Referee Loring Doolittle upheld the decision.

Jeannot Gilbert, Wayne Connelly, Cliff Pennington and Jean-Paul Parise scored the other Kingston goals. Sudbury got two goals apiece from Gord Labossiere and Red Armstrong.

Phil Esposito scored three goals to lead St. Louis to its second upset victory over Hull-Ottawa in 24 hours, boosting his total to 31 for the season. Alain Caron and Don Grosso scored the other goals for the Braves. For Caron, it was his 58th goal of the season and leaves him three short of tying Orv Tessier’s league record. Keith McCreary paced Hull-Ottawa with two goals. Bob Courcy and Brian Smith scored the others.

 

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