As it marks its 50th anniversary this year, the Nova Scotia Sport Hall of Fame is preparing to welcome a new class of inductees. On November 1, it will induct five athletes, two builders, and one team in a ceremony at the World Trade and Convention Centre in Halifax. This year’s athletes include varsity stars Theresa MacCuish and Richard G. Munro. MacCuish graduated Saint Francis Xavier as the all-time leading scorer in CIS women’s basketball, and Munro never lost a race during his five years at Dalhousie when he topped the podium at every Atlantic and national university track meet he attended.
The hall is also inducting Ken Poole, whose long string of badminton victories includes a silver medal at the Commonwealth Games and a finalist position at the U.S. Open. Kevin Dugas will be enshrined for more than three decades of golfing victories including 16 Atlantic Canadian PGA Championships. The 2014 Induction will also honour the accomplishments of stock car racer Scott Fraser, known as the “Shubie Shuttle” due to his many first-place finishes on race tracks throughout the Maritimes and the U.S., where he out-raced drivers from across the province and around the world.
In the Builder category, Dr. Cathy Campbell has dedicated years to bettering national soccer teams with her knowledge in sports medicine while also coaching one of the provinces greatest track stars, and Anthony Hall has led canoe and kayak teams to unprecedented success while training some of Nova Scotia’s finest Olympic and World Champion paddlers.
This diverse inductee class is rounded out by the 1998 Truro Bearcats Hockey Club, a team that will be forever remembered for giving Nova Scotia its second-ever Allan Cup win after more than six decades of waiting. Bruce Rainnie, television news host at CBC Charlottetown, an accomplished CBC sport play-by-play man, colour commentator and event host will be master of ceremonies for the 16th time, bringing the inductee’s stories to life for an evening as memorable as the achievements that will be celebrated.
Here is a closer look at the Nova Scotian sport heroes who will be honoured at the Induction Awards Night.
Kevin Dugas, recognized by many as one of Nova Scotia’s most decorated and celebrated golfers, has earned recognition at home and abroad – winning 16 Canadian PGA Atlantic Zone Championships and setting several course records in Canada and the United States. The Yarmouth-born golfer was only five years old when he first swung a club and quickly began dominating Midget, Juvenile and Junior play. In 1984, he won the Nova Scotia Men’s Amateur Championship, and later, the PGA Assistants’ Championship of Canada in 1987 and again in 1992. Also in 1992, Kevin shot the lowest daily round at the PGA of America Assistant Professional Championship. He secured second- and third-place finishes at the PGA Club Professional Championships of Canada in 2003 and 2004, and then continued to take top honours at the PGA of Canada Atlantic Zone Championships, winning five of his sixteen titles in the past decade.
The late Scott Fraser of Shubenacadie is still a race-track legend, with a large local and national following that he earned during his 12 years of professional stock car racing. Scott won the Maritime Modified Championship in 1992 and later, a pair of Maritime Association for Stock Car Racers (MASCAR) championships in 1996 and 1998. In 1999, he was named Nova Scotia Male Athlete of the Year. From there Fraser started racing against drivers from abroad, securing a set of wins at both the World Series of Asphalt Stock Racing and the International Pro Stock Car Challenge Championship. In 2001, Scott claimed the top prize at six notable American Speed Association (ASA) contests on the north-eastern seaboard. Scott finished first a final time that September – in front of hometown fans at the Scotia Speedworld track. In May 2004, Atlantic Cat, one of Scott’s sponsors, held a memorial event at that track in Scott’s name. This has become an annual race. Similarly, a memorial trophy was introduced before the New Year to be awarded to the winner of the Atlantic Cat 250.
For Xavierans and basketball fans alike, Theresa MacCuish of Balls Creek, Cape Breton, is the greatest women’s basketball player to have ever worn an X-Women jersey. During her first year of play (1991-92), she was the St. Francis Xavier and Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) rookie of the year. Previously, none of the university’s female athletes had received these honours during the same year and none have since. Atlantic University Sport (AUS) named her rookie of the year in 1991 and most valuable player in 1992-93. Currently, only two former X-Women, including Theresa, have been recognized as the league’s top athletes. Throughout her university basketball career, MacCuish was recognized twice as a CIS all-Canadian, five times as an AUS all-star and four times as the university’s female athlete of the year. She graduated from StFX in 1995 with more than 2,000 career points, setting scoring records among X-Women and CIS athletes nation-wide. Theresa then advanced to a professional league in the U.K., where she capped off her career.
Richard G. Munro, of Bridgewater, launched a record-setting nine-year track and field career in the late-sixties when he started competing at the university level for Dalhousie University. Richard claimed five consecutive Atlantic Canada Senior Open Cross-Country Championship titles and won numerous regional road races, finishing with record times. He triumphed at track and field meets in Nova Scotia and abroad, including a 1971 trip to Sao Paulo, Brazil, where he raced in a road race as the sole Canadian. Returning to Canada, he received the Climo Award (Male Athlete of the Year) from Dalhousie University during the 1972-73 academic year, the same year he won the Canadian Interuniversity Men’s Track and Field Championship. In 1974, he continued to succeed internationally, placing first in a 5,000-metre race and competing as a member of the 10,000-metre team at the West Australia Track & Field Championships. Throughout his career, he went undefeated in university races.
Ken Poole dominated the sport of badminton from a young age, winning over 25 provincial and national titles in both singles and doubles competition and excelling in every age group. Originally from Truro, Nova Scotia, Ken was a member of Badminton Canada’s national team from 1984 to 1987 and also competed in the prestigious All-England Championships between 1985 and 1987. After making it as a finalist for men’s singles at the 1985 U.S. Open, he captured a silver medal at the 1986 Commonwealth Games in the team event. He earned a reputation for defeating champions, beating out the National Doubles title-holder in 1984 and becoming the first Canadian to defeat China’s Wen Wang in singles competition in 1991. Known for his excellent sportsmanship, Ken has followed up a successful athletic career with many dedicated years of coaching and a seven-year term as president of the Canadian Badminton Coaches Association.
The 1998 Truro Bearcat Hockey Club became the first Nova Scotia team to win the coveted Allan Cup since 1935, and only the second team to ever win the championship. After advancing to Cup competition three times in the 10 years prior to their win, the Bearcats ended a 63-year drought to capture the Allan Cup in front of a capacity crowd at Colchester Legion Stadium. These local heroes include Kevin MacRae, Jason White, Mike Boyd, Craig Booker, Chris Hale, Steve Ryan, Chris Brassard, Bruce Campbell, Rod MacIntosh, Reggie Bowes, Steve Gordon, Gary Thomas, Craig Jenkins, Randy MacNeill, Kelly Kolke, Dwight Lucas, Sandy MacKenzie, Jason Decoste, Brian Melanson, Todd Parker, Ryan Isenor, Brian Grouchy, Darren Welsh, Barry Harrietha, Tom Beaton, Jim Laing, John Kibyuk (Coach), Gerald Marshall (Assistant Coach), John Thoms (Equipment Manager), Richard MacKenzie (Assistant Coach), Ron “Doc” Chalmers (Team Doctor), Kelly Johnson (Medical Trainer), Shawn Thomson (Trainer), Jim Foley (General Manager), Larry Anthony (General Manager) and Stu Rath (Owner). Their 6-1 defeat of the powerhouse London Admirals made the Bearcats’ victory the Daily News top sports story of 1998. Led by tournament MVP and All-Star Jason White, and fellow tournament All-Stars Darren Welsh and Dwight Lucas, the 21 players (19 of whom were local Nova Scotians) were named Sport Nova Scotia’s Team of the Year.
Known for her important contributions to soccer, track and field, and sport medicine, Dr. Cathy Campbell has been a builder of sport as a coach, administrator, educator and medical expert for over 40 years. Cathy can be credited for one of the province’s greatest track and field successes, having coached Canadian champion and Hall of Famer Cecilia Branch for eight years. The Halifax native has provided her medical expertise in international soccer competition, serving ten years as team physician for the Canadian Women’s soccer team and attending five FIFA Women’s World Cups as team physician and five as FIFA medical officer. In 2012 she developed a new injury report system as leader of the Women’s High Performance Team at the London Olympics. Cathy is now preparing to be lead physician for the 2014 FIFA U-20 World Cup and the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, both of which will be held in Canada.
One of the first full time, year-round canoe coaches in the country, Anthony Hall of Dartmouth, Nova Scotia has led many athletes to international success during his outstanding career as a builder in the sports of canoe and kayak. Tony first gained recognition for leading the struggling Orenda Canoe Club in Lake Echo to a national championship title in 1987, after just three years under his tutelage. He has since coached several Olympic and World Championship team members, most notably serving as Hall of Famer, World Champion and Olympic medal-winner Steve Giles’ personal coach for 20 years. As the provincial canoe and kayak coach, Tony steered the Nova Scotia team to overall victories at the Canada Games in 1981 and 1989, while also coaching the women’s national and Olympic kayak teams from 1994 to 1997 and securing the title for overall women’s points at the 1995 World Championships.