A sold out Frankford arena had an opportunity to celebrate the future, while remembering the past.
Saturday October 2, 2021 was the Home/Season Opener for the latest version of the Frankford Huskies. The Huskies have been a minor hockey organization, senior hockey, and of course best remembered as a junior c staple.
The Huskies dropped the puck against the Picton Pirates, and although they did not come out with a win, they did get the community buzzing that junior hockey was back in a big way.
For those that did not get a program, here is the write-up by Karen & Brian Coxwell below
FRANKFORD JR C HUSKIES 1973-74
REMEMBERING WITH A SMILE!
It all started back in 1972-73 when the Frankford Juveniles reached the Ontario Semi-Finals. Although falling short of advancing to the finals the local juveniles had won the hearts of the village. Over a cup of coffee in the local restaurant following the series the following observation was thrown around the table. ‘We’ve got a good Juvenile team, but after this year they don’t have any place to continue playing organized hockey. Maybe we could get a Junior ‘C’ or ‘D’ franchise. With that in mind and the support of a few interested hockey-minded people namely Bill Payne and Cliff Filmore the legwork began. Mr. Jack Devine, Belleville’s prominent sports promoter suggested a ‘C’ franchise be applied for. He felt the surrounding area, along with the Village of Frankford could provide ample hockey talent to mold a competitive team.
The application was sent to the O.H.A. and following countless correspondence and numerous phone calls the franchise was granted. At the time, the O.H.A. in granting a franchise, took into consideration whether an applicant had the proper facilities to accommodate an entry, according to their standards. At the time, the people of Frankford were fortunate to have such facilities as provided in their arena and that was the deciding factor. The Village Council leadership along with the Frankford Lion’s Club fundraising undertakings had taken on much of the financial responsibility of the required projects by matching grants given by Wintario. The seats, new boards, glass around the ice surface, renovations to the foyer, canteen and extension of the Centennial Room upstairs went hand in hand in providing a comfortable spot to enjoy all events at the arena.
In the beginning, many village people felt the hockey club was worthy of their help and purchased shares to ice a competitive team. They were in fact donations as no one had yet realized any financial profit from their initial investment. Raising funds to cover operating costs was always a challenge. In 1979 operating expenses were in excess of $13,000. The club did not pay players but provided all equipment (with the exception of skates) and bus transportation. Draws, dances, program advertising, and the ever-popular Sportsfest (ran cooperatively with FMHA) carried the club for the majority of those years. Despite the odds, the Huskies Club operated successfully for 13 seasons. Dedicated fans, executive members and Huskies players throughout the years withstood the frustration and challenges associated with bringing together players and supporters to ice a team. Frankford Arena on Friday night home games was ‘the place to be’ cheering on our Huskies.
In the formative years names that come to mind are Bill Payne, Leon Collins, Dr. Don Wright, Joyce Frost, Bob Lockwood, Harry Wickson, Rod Anderson Andy Gorgerat, Ivan Smith and Allan Brooks. Of course too, there were the first shareholders, namely Jack Madill, Don Farrar, Leonard Reid, Norm Caldwell, Earl Gregory, Brian Coxwell, Thorbut Smith, Doug Cooney, Raymond Rowe, Bruce Loney, Jim Forbes, Harry Boulter, Bob Lott, Steve Bedard, Ron Conley advertising; Gord Morrison, Sports Booster Fund of this village that assisted many groups, Shelly and Earl Gregory, Mr. & Mrs. Oscar Farrar, Mr. E. Payne, Helen and Leon Collins, Sam Payne, Janet Bauer, Brenda Cooney, Karen Coxwell and many others.
Perennial Husky fans who never missed a game must be acknowledged too – Mr. Gerald Haggerty and Mr. Thorburt Smith.
LEAGUE FORMAT: Frankford began their first season in 1972-73 in the Central Ontario Jr. ‘C’ League, which then was comprised of seven teams including Cobourg Cougars, Port Hope Panthers, Bowmanville Eagles, Port Perry Flamingos, Lindsay Muskies and Sutton North Shore Rangers. Their first year in operation, they were eliminated in the first round by Port Perry. The following season they finished third only six points out of first but were again defeated in the first round by Port Perry. The next two years Huskies were faced with an early spring as they failed to make play-offs.
The following year 1977-78, the Quinte-St. Lawrence Jr. ‘C’ League was formed when teams east of Frankford including Wellington Dukes, Napanee Tiremen, Ernestown Jets and Gananoque G-Men expressed a desire to form a junior entry. Competition was fierce and even more intense during playoffs. Packed arenas with fans cheering on their hometown heroes were loud and proud each game. Who can forget the battle royals between Garry Lavender’s Wellington Dukes and our Frankford Huskies?
QUINTE- ST. LAWRENCE JR. C CHAMPIONS
March 7, 1984, Frankford Huskies first league championship will stand out in the minds of all involved in the team for eternity. After capturing the regular season trophy, Huskies won the Alberta Distilleries Limited Trophy emblematic of the Quinte-St.Lawrence Jr. C Champions. Frankford flew through the playoffs with only a single loss in 9 playoff games winning their last seven straight. They saved the toughest game for the end as the Huskies played over 80 minutes of hockey before ‘Boomer’ Dan Arsenault lifted the puck over the Ernestown’s goalie at 11:33 sudden death overtime, behind a 65 save performance by Huskie goaltender Mike Genereaux. The Huskies would win 8-7.
Coaching Frankford’s Championship Team was Chuck MacAulay who had previously coached several Frankford Minor Hockey Juvenile teams to OMHA Championships. His Assistant Coach was Bob Adams. Several players on the team were from Frankford, including Captain Rob Collins, Assistant Captains Aaron Sheil and Jim McMahon, Goalie Mike Genereaux, Randy Patrick, Dan Arsenault, Greg Morrison, Rick Roberts, Bill Payne, Manager Brian Coxwell, Reg VanLuven, Equipment Manager. Hailing from Brighton Scott Dick who won the League Scoring Title and brother Neil Dick. Belleville was represented by Angelo Lentini, Rob Geneja, Bob Nauss, Mike Donovan and Trevor Powell. Lyle Walker from Stirling and hailing from Trenton were Tim Scaletta, Steve Weston and Steve Robinson.
After 13 seasons, Junior C hockey in Frankford came to an end May 1985. The ability to raise the required funds, along with a very competitive hockey climate saw limited player availability for the smaller hockey clubs Frankford Huskies were deciding factors. There were no regrets from the initial group who spearheaded the dream of Junior Hockey in Frankford. At the time, hopes of the team being resurrected down the road were in the minds of many. Now, that is exactly what is happening and there is every reason to expect this hockey club will rise to the occasion and hockey fans in the area will be treated to exciting hockey at the Frankford Arena once again. As always, it’s a
GO HUSKIES GO!