50 Years Ago in Hockey: Mikita Erupts Against Bruins

Chicago Black Hawks centre Stan Mikita, who had had a relatively quiet season up until now, erupted for three goals as the Hawks pasted the Boston Bruins 10-1 in one of three National Hockey League contests last night. In the other two games, Montreal came back to edge the New York Rangers 4-3 in Montreal and the Maple Leafs dropped a 5-3 decision to the Detroit Red Wings at home in Toronto.

Esposito, Hay Scored Two Each

Phil Esposito
Phil Esposito

Mikita opened the scoring at 4:42 of the first period and the Hawks never looked back. The slick Chicago centre converted a nice goalmouth pass by Ken Wharram past Bruins goalie Bernie Parent.  Phil Esposito added two goals  to put Chicago up 3-0 at the end of one.

The Hawks pumped home four more goals past Parent in the middle stanza. Mikita added his second, with Bill Hay, Chico Maki and Eric Nesterenko also connecting. Johnny Bucyk got the Bruins on the scoreboard in the final minute of the period. With the shutout opportunity gone, the Hawks replaced starting goalie Glenn Hall with rookie Dave Dryden to start the third period. Hall was sensational over the 40 minutes he played, especially early in the game, before the issue had been decided.

The final 20 minutes saw Mikita get his third of the night, Hay pick up his second and Bobby Hull add the tenth Chicago tally, his 16th of the year.

Unheralded defenseman Matt Ravlich had perhaps the finest game of his NHL career with three assists.

Andy Bathgate Haunts Leafs

Andy Bathgate
Andy Bathgate

Detroit Red Wings right-winger Andy Bathgate, traded to the Wings by the Toronto Maple Leafs in the offseason, came back to haunt his former mates last night at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto. Bathgate scored two goals to lead the Red Wings past the Leafs 5-3.

Bathgate was the scoring star in a lacklustre game that produced almost no action. Both teams appeared at times to be simply going through the motions.

Joining Bathgate with goals for the Red Wings were Bruce MacGregor, Gordie Howe and Paul Henderson.

Toronto marksmen were Eddie Shack, Ron Ellis and Bob Pulford.

Eddie Shack scored disputed goal.
Eddie Shack scored disputed goal.

Shack’s goal, which tied the score at 2-2 in the second period, was hotly disputed by the Red Wings. The burly Toronto forward was breaking in on Detroit goalie Roger Crozier when he was checked by Detroit’s Warren Godfrey. Godfrey knocked the puck away from Shack toward the Detroit net, where Crozier pounced on the loose rubber. Goal judge Grant Eason turned on the red light to signify the puck had crossed the goal line and the Leafs celebrated accordingly.

Referee Vern Buffy ruled that Crozier’s right hand, in which the puck apparently rested, was fully over the goal line. Crozier was livid with Buffy and chased him all over the ice, arguing vociferously that the disk never was in his grasp, but was instead frozen under his leg pad, well in front of the red line. His hand was behind his pad to make sure Shack didn’t try and poke it past him.

Things got complicated when, as soon as the red light was activated by Eason, Leafs’ Bob Pulford retrieved the puck. Crozier and Detroit coach Sid Abel claim that Pulford stole the puck from in the Detroit goal. Pulford, as expected, wouldn’t discuss the matter.

Big Comeback for Habs

Jean Beliveau
Jean Beliveau

Jean Beliveau’s second goal of the game brought the Montreal Canadiens all the way back from a 3-0 first-period deficit to give the Habs a 4-3 win over the New York Rangers.

Don Marshall, Johnny McKenzie and Rod Gilbert had given the Rangers a 3-0 lead in the opening 20 minutes. The capacity Forum crowd was shocked as the Rangers completely dominated the period, and could have been up by five or more had it not been for the fine work of Montreal goalkeeper Gump Worsley.

Worsley continued to play well in the middle frame, and two spectacular saves seemed to awaken the Habs from their slumber and they slowly took over the game.

Beliveau put Montreal on the scoreboard with a nice deflection of a Jacques Laperriere point shot. Red Berenson’s second of the year late in the period made it 3-2 and the momentum swing was palpable.

Jacques Laperriere
Jacques Laperriere

Laperriere was instrumental in the tying goal at 4:49 of the third. While Ranger captain Bob Nevin was off for tripping, Laperriere fired another point shot at Ranger goalie Ed Giacomin. This time it was Yvan Cournoyer who deflected the puck past Giacomin, although this one was quite unintentional. The shot struck Cournoyer’s skate, giving the Ranger netminder no chance on the play.

Beliveau scored the winner after taking a long pass from Jean Guy Talbot. The big Montreal captain skated in alone on Giacomin and beat him cleanly with a quick wrist shot for his seventh of the season.

Springfield Coach Quits

Al Murray, who once played for the old New York Americans, resigned last night as coach of the Springfield Indians of the American Hockey League.

Al Murray with the NY Americans
Al Murray with the NY Americans

Murray made his resignation official when he didn’t show up for the Indians game last night at home against the Vancouver Canucks. He was reported to have stayed home with his wife, who is quite ill.

Murray explained the events leading up to his decision:

“A lot of things entered into my decision. I’ve never been associated with a losing club before and I warned the players themselves of my intention of leaving. Earlier in the week in Victoria I told them that unless they started putting out and won the game that night I would leave.

“They didn’t and I meant what I said. There is no sense worrying myself sick about this club when I don’t have any say in how things should run on the ice.

“Shore (Indians owner Eddie Shore) alone wants to make all the decisions and I refuse to be that kind of coach.”

The Indians have a 6-16 won-lost record and are in last place in the AHL’s Eastern Division. Shore was unavailable for comment.

OHA Black Hawks Fire Brenchley

Chirp Brenchley, in 1934-35 with Hershey.
Chirp Brenchley, in 1934-35 with Hershey.

The St. Catharines Black Hawks of the OHA Junior A Series have dismissed coach Edgar (Chirp) Brenchley. Hawks general manager Ken Campbell made the announcement yesterday. The decision comes on the heels of a disastrous 7-3 loss to the Hamilton Red Wings less than 48 hours earlier.

Campbell did not immediately name a successor. He said that a new man would not be in place for at least a week. Ellard (Obie) O’Brien, a St. Catharines native and former captain of the Hershey Bears of the AHL will take over the team until a permanent replacement can be found. O’Brien is in his second year as coach of the St. Catharines Falcons of the Niagara District Junior B League.

Brenchley, 51, had a fine amateur and minor professional playing career before turning to coaching. He came to St. Catharines 14 months ago after two years with Port Huron of the International Hockey League.