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2009 Inductees

1984 Pee Wee “C” Hockey Team

Thirteen proved to be a lucky number for the 1983-1984 Berwick Bruins Pee Wee “C” Team. Who knew at the beginning of the year that the thirteen young boys who suited up for Berwick would go on to win the provincial championship? As the year progressed, their coach, Robert Hiltz, saw their skills improve and their confidence grow as they practiced scoring, face-offs, and goalie management. Sponsored by Gordie Morse Trucking, the boys began to gel as a team. They won the Bridgetown Christmas Hockey Tournament in a tightly contested final where they defeated the host team.

Next came the playdowns to see who would represent the zone in the provincial tournament. First the boys met Kentville and trounced them by scores of 13-0 and 8-2. Then they played Bridgetown. The competition was tougher, but Berwick prevailed by scores of 6-1 and 4-2. Next was Clare, which Berwick soundly thrashed by scores of 16-2 and 17-1. The boys were rolling and Newport proved no match as Berwick rolled over them by scores of 10-1 in Berwick and 4-2 in Newport. Now the boys were Valley Champions and their next series was against Western Zone Champion Liverpool, with the winner going on to the provincial championship in Shelburne. In the first game, after falling behind 5-1 by the end of the second period, the boys stormed back in the third to win 8-5. The next game was in Berwick and the home team won handily by a score of 6-3.

Finally it was the round robin provincial championship. In the first game, Berwick soundly defeated Springhill with a score of 9-1. The next game was a thriller, with Berwick beating Cape Breton 4-3 and the winning goal coming with only 55 seconds left in the game. In the championship game Berwick defeated hometown Shelburne by a score of 6-1 and with it won the first Provincial Championship by a Berwick team since 1967. Making the Provincial All-Star Team were leading scorer and tournament MVP Jamie Arsenault, All-Star Gordie Paul Read, and All-Star defenseman Brian MacLennan. Thirteen wins in a row on their way to the championship made thirteen a lucky number for the boys from Berwick.

The Berwick Sports Hall of Fame is proud to induct the 1983-1984 Berwick Bruins Provincial Pee Wee “C” Hockey Champions.

Inducted June 2010

Purdy Adams

Purdy Adams was born in 1920, the son of Charles and Ida Adams, and grew up on South Street in Berwick. His love of sports was evident as a young boy, and he remembers walking to South Berwick to play pond hockey. Once at the pond he put on his “spring” skates with magazines for shin pads and had a great time. In later years he played hockey for the Berwick School team and then for the Berwick Bruins. He was known as an excellent skater who could easily put the puck in the net. During one Bruins game, Purdy was the unfortunate recipient of serious facial cuts from an opponent's skates after checking him. Purdy was attended to by Dr R. A. Moreash, who arrived at the rink just as the accident happened; he was then taken to hospital.

Purdy loved baseball, growing up playing in town with his friends and on the Berwick School team. He remembers walking over to Welsford to join in games of ball with the Kinsman brothers Harry, Cyril, and Earle and their friends. He fondly recalls having great fun in friendly sparring matches in the garage with Earle, who was an accomplished boxer.

Purdy's accomplishments in Track and Field were stellar. In 1932 Berwick won the Schoolboy Championship at the Kings County Interschool Track Meet. Purdy, age 12, was a major contributor, winning the 60, 100 and 440 yd dashes as well as the broad jump.

The next year, 1933, Purdy, as a member of the Berwick Tuxis Boys Team, traveled to the Acadia University Campus in Wolfville to compete in the Kings County Athletic Meet for the Maritime and National Trophies. The Berwick team finished in first place. Purdy won the medal for the leading scorer in his own class, as well as in all classes. He was named Maritime Champion when his results were compared to those of other Maritime Competitions.

The following year, 1934, the Berwick team traveled again to Acadia University to compete. Purdy won all six events in Class Two, the medal for leading scorer in all classes, and was the reason the Berwick boys made the best showing. The Halifax Chronicle Herald headline on the sports page read “Purdy Adams Big Scorer in Valley Sports Meet”. His results were as follows: 75 yd dash 9.2 sec; potato race 17 sec; high jump 4ft 3 1/2 in; 6lb shot put 33ft 2in; baseball throw 216 ft 2in; broad jump 13ft 7in.

In later years, Dr R.V. Thorpe told Purdy's mother how worried he'd been when competing against the "little guy from Berwick" in the track meets years before and how easily Purdy had outraced him.

The Berwick Sports Hall of Fame is proud to induct Purdy Adams.

Inducted June 2009

Andy Hopkins

Born in Bear Point, Shelburne County, Andy discovered at an early age he loved sports and nothing would stop him from competing! He excelled at track and field (running a 10.6 in 100 yard dash). From 1949-1959, he attended The School for the Deaf in Halifax, returning to the South Shore, armed with the “Power to Believe”. Playing defence on his hometown hockey team, they would finish runner-up in the Yarmouth-Shelburne League in 1961-1962.

In 1963 The Berwick Register lured Andy to the Valley. Little did anyone know the impact he would have on the area. Later on he would write an article on curling for The Register and as an educator he taught sign language at various schools in the Valley. He married his wife Nancy in 1966.

Soon badminton would peak his interest. Andy played mostly doubles tournaments from Greenwood to Wolfville. He fondly remembers the fine play of Don Weir, Gerald Chase, Madeline Rice, Denton Graham and Mildred Stewart. He would pick up on hockey again in The Berwick Suburban League, playing defence against the likes of Jim and Pat Hampsey and Richard Palmer. All along he pitched, caught and played outfield in the Berwick and Area Slow-pitch League. His talent was so impressive that he was selected to play for the Calgary Warriors in the 6th Annual Canadian Deaf Slow-pitch Tournament held in London, Ontario in 1987.

It appeared Andy saved his best for curling. Joining the Berwick Curling Club in 1978, he played in numerous bonspiels, Mixed, Men's and Senior Categories, often receiving many trophies and awards. His greatest thrill was posting an 8 Ender in 1999. Twice he had 7 Enders. He, along with Gerry Millett, Leonard Amero and Fay George represented Berwick at the Nova Scotia Mixed bonspiel in Bridgewater in 1995.

However, Andy's greatest contribution was bringing Provincial and National attention to Nova Scotia Deaf Sports. He played in the Canadian Deaf Curling Championships, an astounding 12 times from 1984 to 2006. He was Host Chairman of the event in Halifax in 1990.

He started bowling for the Kentville Advertiser out of New Minas Lanes in 1980. He soon developed a 95 average and on different occasions thrilled the gallery with 4 straight spares and 3 strikes in a row. In 1970 The Eastern Bowling Association for the Deaf (E.B.A.D.) was formed in Saint John, N.B. Not only did he compete, but was E.B.A.D. Host Chairman five times.

In 2004 he was honoured with the Special Award of Dedication from the Nova Scotia Deaf Sports Association.

The Berwick Sports Hall of Fame is proud to induct Andy Hopkins.

Inducted June 2009

Peter Connell

Like most young military boys growing up around a base, Peter played hockey in the winter and baseball and golf in the summer first in Petawawa and then Greenwood. Sports came naturally to him. His skills developed and he was noted for his "smooth hands". Peter was a gifted goal scorer and an accurate passer. He was captain, leading scorer and team MVP in his hockey days at West Kings High School. He starred with the Greenwood Junior Bombers, the Berwick Bruins Intermediate team and the Grimshaw Huskies of the Alberta League. As a smooth fielding second baseman, he made the All-Star team in the Valley Fastball League. While with the Berwick Eassons he was a member of Berwick's famous Roger's Dodgers. Peter was also a steady golfer and recorded a hole-in-one at Paragon and reached a playoff in the South Berwick Invitational Golf Tournament.

As the children (Mark, Michael and Amanda) came along Peter turned his attention to coaching and supporting their athletic careers. He coached his son Mark with Grimshaw Minor Baseball/Hockey from 1981 to 1983, they later moved to Saint John and he coached Michael as he began his venture into sports. He and Susan moved the family home to Berwick; he continued his coaching with Berwick Minor Baseball and Berwick Minor Hockey.

Peter enjoyed the "hands on" of coaching and also recognized the behind the scenes effort required to run an association and to put a team together. Peter volunteered as ice coordinator and later President of Berwick Minor Hockey from 1995 to 1998.

It was with female sport that Peter became a "true" builder. He also discovered the unique skills required to coach females and to his credit he successfully mastered them, likely helped at home as well. Daughter Amanda was blossoming as a young athlete as were many young friends in the area. In 1997, with Colin Best and Marlene Connell, they formed the Kings County Royals Peewee fast-pitch team. With each year the Royals progressed winning a Bantam B Provincial Championship in 1999 and runner-up in Bantam A in 2000. In 2001 and 2002 the Royals again struck gold at the Midget levels.

In the 1996/97 hockey season a delegation of female hockey players went to Wolfville to participate in the first female bantam hockey team in the Valley. In 1998/99 it was time to bring the girls home. Peter and Mike Trinacty formed the first female bantam hockey team in Berwick. Playing against boys' teams and traveling the province for female competition, the team developed rapidly. In March they travelled to Stellarton for the Provincial Championship. They met the Baddeck Bobcats in the final and dropped them 3-1 to clinch the Provincial championship in their first year.

Following Amanda through the age divisions, Peter formed the Valley Thunder female midget hockey team in 2000/01 where they won silver at the provincial championships. He coached at the high school level at Central Kings and helped form the Valley Girls High School Hockey League in 2001. That year they won the right as regional champions to attend the first annual NSSAF provincial female hockey championship. The annual Christmas high school hockey tournament in Berwick is named in his honour.

Not only is Peter known as a builder of youth sport, he was an organizer with his peers. He organized the Youth Centre Annual Golf Tournament which is named after him and many staff floor hockey competitions.

Peter was a competitor but he taught more than competition, he taught sportsmanship, comradery and friendship. Respect, effort, sportsmanship and improvement were always on the top of Peter's list. Winning would come to those who put in the hard work. Peter was a firm but fair coach. When he spoke players listened. Not only did they improve but learned many life lessons on the way. Peter was a role model to all who surrounded him. Co-coach Colin Best summed it up best by saying, "He was a builder of character".

He left us too early that fateful day in December 2004. The Berwick Sports Hall of Fame is proud to induct Peter Connell.

Inducted June 2009

1993-1994 Central Kings Gators High School Hockey Team

The 1993-94 Central Kings Gators hockey season started and ended with a bang. The Gators were a team with a mission, starting the 1993-94 campaign by outscoring their opponents 17-5 in the first two games. This Gators team could skate and score, and they terrorized the Valley High School Hockey League finishing second in league play. Their only regular season loss was to the eventual AAA provincial champions Kings-Edgehill.

In December the Gators attended the Can-Am International Tournament in Lake Placid, New York. Traveling twenty-two hours by school bus, the Gators fared well against strong opposition, losing the bronze medal game to a great team from Oakville, Ontario. The tournament proved to be a bonding moment for the team, propelling the Gators through the second half of the season.

The Gators came into the AA playoffs on a high, promptly dispatching the team from Digby Regional High in two straight games, by scores of 14-1 and 8-3. This set up a much anticipated match up between long time rival KCA for regional bragging rights. The series lived up to the hype, with Central Kings winning a game 1 slugfest by a 12-8 score in Berwick. The series shifted back to Kentville for Game 2, which saw the KCA squad shock the Gators 5-4 and even the series at one game apiece. Game 3 turned out to be another barnburner, with both teams trading chances. Ultimately, the Gators avenged their Game 2 loss, 11-6, to win the Western Region title.

The stage was set for the Provincial AA Championships to be held in Berwick. Four teams would compete: Central Kings, KCA, East Pictou, and Isle Madame. The road to the championship would go through Isle Madame, the previous season's finalist. Central Kings dusted the Cape Breton champions 8-3 in the semi-finals, with Colin Kendall taking the Game MVP with two goals and three assists.

This win set up the championship game against two time defending provincial champion East Pictou. In the final game, two stars shone brightly. During a season that saw a different hero for CK almost every night, Chris Salsman and Jamie Spinney rose to the challenge. Salsman scored three times to pace the Gators, including the game winner late in the third for a 7-5 victory. Spinney was phenomenal in goal, stopping 39 shots, including 17 in the last period of play. It was a game for the ages, nearly raising the roof off the old ice palace in Berwick.

In a season of stars, the Gators had put it all together for high school hockey's ultimate prize. It was a retirement present for Gator coach John Prall, who went out a winner. In his last season behind the Gators' bench, Prall watched as his team steamrolled the opposition en route to the AA Provincial title. It was a season never to be forgotten. The Berwick Sports Hall of Fame is proud to induct the 1993-94 Central Kings Gators hockey team.

Team Members

Jamie Spinney
Colin Kendall
Donald Chisholm
Corey Bezanson
Chad Bower
Brad Connell
Jarret Diggins
Kevin Spidle
Mike Sweet
Mark Galley
Jeremy Tracey
Colin Brewster
Craig Lutz
Jody Tracey
Chris Johnson
Charlie Aalders
Chris Salsman
Brad Carty
Adrian Comeau
Matt Hart

Coach: John Prall
Asst. Coach: Ian Collins
Asst. Coach: Sib Pye
Trainor: Gary Galley
Manager: Frank Woodworth
Statistician: Justin Halbersma

Inducted June 2009

1971 Berwick Alpines Men's Fastball Team

In 1971, Berwick decided to enter the Nova Scotia Senior “B” Playdowns. The game was popular and there were lots of good players around. Sponsorship was secured and the team entered the Valley Fastball League. This league was very competitive, comprised of exciting teams from three levels of play; Junior, Intermediate and Senior.

With Art Newton as President, Lawrence Hayden as Manager, Head Coach Pat Hampsay and Assistant Coach Lawrence Johnstone were ready to pick the team. Local pitching legends Gary Whittier and Gerry Murphy shared the duties on the mound. John Prall was catcher and veteran Al Hale played first base. Rounding out the infield, Murray Aalders at third, Dale Lloyd at shortstop, Mike Baxter at second base, and Gerry Carty and John Margeson as utility infielders. The outfield was comprised of Mike Kinsman in left and Bruce Redden in center with Paul Bethune and Eddie Nichols sharing duties in right field. With strong defence, great pitching and lots of power, especially from the bat of Mike Kinsman (who led the league in homers) the team won the league title with a record of 21 wins, 2 losses and an 11th inning tie.

The Alpines entered the tournament to represent Nova Scotia in the Easter Canadian Championships. In the first week, Berwick won their two games and tied for first. In the second week, Berwick lost in the quarter final to Brookfield but rebounded to down Brooklyn Mooseheads 6-1 to advance to the final against Halifax Keiths. The stage was set. Thousands had gathered at the Halifax Commons which, just two years prior, had hosted the very exciting 1969 Canada Games. Some players say it was the most exciting and best played games of their careers. In a fourteen inning-heartbreaking 4-3 loss, star pitcher Gerry Murphy, who had homered earlier in the game, broke his leg sliding into second. Gary Whittier replaced him and pitched 29 innings that day.

After this tournament, the Alpines went on to win the Valley League Playoffs, beating Greenwood in the final.

After the Valley League Playoffs, it was time for the Senior B Playdowns. Once again, Greenwood would become the victims. In the best of three series, Berwick edged by them 6-5 in the final to earn the right to represent the Valley in the Nova Scotia Senior B Playdowns. After a month of inactivity, the Alpines outhit the powerful New Glasgow Squad 14-7, but were defeated by two identical 1-0 losses. New Glasgow went on to win the Nova Scotia Championship, sweeping Glace Bay in the final.

All-in-all, it was a tremendous year for the Alpines Softball Team, their sponsors and fans.

The Berwick Sports Hall of Fame is proud to induct the 1971 Berwick Alpines Fastball team.

Team Members

Murray Aalders
Mike Baxter
Mike Kinsman
Paul Bethune
Gerry Carty
Al Hale
Dale Lloyd
Jon Margeson
Gerry Murphy
Ed Nichols
John Prall
Bruce Redden
Gary Whittier

Coach: Pat Hampsay
Asst. Coach: Lawrence Johnstone
Manager: Lawrence Hayden
President: Art Newton

Inducted June 2009

Mike Kinsman

Mike was born in Berwick in 1949 and began playing hockey at the age of eight on the Somerset Dam and Welsford Pond with his cousins and his two brothers, Brian and Phil. At age twelve, with the arrival of artificial ice in Berwick, he began playing hockey in the Berwick Minor Hockey program. Mike moved up through the Peewee, Bantam, and Midget programs, developing his skills as a great skater and talented scorer, always finding himself among the leading point-getters on the team. At age sixteen, while still Midget age, he was invited to play for the Halifax Junior Canadiens, the top Junior A team in the Maritimes. This team was comprised of the best junior age players in Nova Scotia and several top players from Quebec and Ontario. Two of Mike's teammates were Buster Harvey and Errol Thompson, both of whom went on to play in the NHL. The team played exhibition games every weekend against the top Junior teams in Quebec and Ontario in preparation for the Memorial Cup playdowns. The Canadiens won the Maritime Championship, defeating the Fredericton Red Wings and then defeating the Cornwall Royals in seven games. Their season ended when they lost the next round, in the Memorial Cup quarter finals, to the Shawinigan Falls Bruins.

Mike was invited back home to play for the newly formed Berwick Shell Juniors, an all star team of local boys bolstered by several players from Kentville and Greenwood. This was a popular team which regularly filled the Berwick arena to capacity. Brother Phil was an all star defenseman on this same team. The Juniors defeated the Windsor Royals in a hard fought six game series. The team ended their season by losing a six game series to the Halifax Colonels. Mike played the following two years for the Juniors before moving on to play in the Nova Scotia Senior Hockey League from 1970 to 1977. In 1978, he moved to Calgary where he continued to play as an Old-timer until forced to hang up his skates after undergoing heart surgery in 2001.

Mike began playing fastball in Somerset at a very young age, competing with men much older than him. His first organized ball was played with the championship Cambridge Red & Whites, coached by Doc Thorpe. Next came the Berwick Juniors, Berwick Alpines, Berwick Bakery, and Berwick Eassons where Mike would win two homerun titles and be named all star left fielder on several occasions. In 1977, he was player and coach of the highly talented Berwick Eassons softball team, which would finish second in the Nova Scotia playdowns, where he was again named all star left fielder.

After moving to Calgary, Mike played with various fastball teams, winning three city championships and batting titles in three consecutive years. In the city championships in 1985 he hit walk-off homers in games four and five to win the championship. All-in-all, a great career in hockey and fastball.

The Berwick Sports Hall of Fame is proud to induct Mike Kinsman.

Inducted June 2009