History of the SHA
From its humble beginnings in 1956 the member clubs of Agincourt Lions, West Hill and Dorset Park began House League Select play in three divisions of Peewee, Minor Bantam and Bantam in the Scarborough Hockey Association.
Games were played on outdoor facilities with the accompanied problems of weather delays, snow removal and frostbite. Despite the many issues of the day there was significant interest in the program by area clubs seeking to join.
The 1960/1961 season saw that interest develop into something more substantial with the addition of Wexford and Clairlea. The League moved into the Tam O'Shanter complex and play expanded to a 15 game regular season with a round robin semi-final and a best of three final. Interest from Cedar Hill peaked and they joined the playoff format. In 1961/1962 Cedar Hill officially joined to bring the league to six (6) members. Incorporation by "LETTERS PATENT" were issued on November 23rd, 1962.
The 1962/1963 season saw the schedule out of Tam O'Shanter increased to include Novice 8 to Bantam while the Minor Midget and Midget teams played one game per week out of the Unionville Arena. The Scarborough Hockey Association applied to become a division of the then T.H.L. and were rejected. Teams of Minor Midget, Midget and Juvenile in five (5) member leagues began play directly in the T.H.L. The Scarborough Sports Council was formed to deal with League issues affecting all members. Scarborough Central Lions (Scarborough Sabres) were welcomed into the league for the start of the 1967/1968 season.
The year 1967 saw Mr. Don Montgomery begin his Forty (40) year reign as President. During his first few years we found stability and growth. The Executive Committee was begun to address competitive issues at the team level. Agincourt Minor Canadians (Agincourt Canadians) began play in the 1967/1968 season bringing to eight (8) the number of member leagues. Those years saw tremendous growth with registration numbers reaching 13,000 players in eight member leagues playing House League and Competitive hockey. Eventually our members played both "A" and "AA" in the T.H.L. and "A" in the Scarborough Hockey Association.
The early seventies again gave us growth with the addition of the Agincourt Civitan Hockey League. We also suffered severe disruption with the loss of the Tam O'Shanter facility to fire. The Scarborough Hockey Association lost their primary playing facility. The S.H.A. had to play their games out of the six (6) alternate arenas of Unionville, East York, Centennial, Clairlea, Stephen Leacock and Art Thompson.
The 1972/1973 season began with the expansion to include both "A" and "AA" classifications. We began with six (6) teams in "AA" and eight (8) teams in "A". Don started the Albert Campbell Memorial Hockey Series for House League teams with the profits going to charitable causes. With the full backing of all the league presidents, the Scarborough Hockey Association notified the governing body of hockey that they would withdraw from organized hockey and form an independent hockey league effective with the 1976/1977 season. The decision was based on matters of principle which could not be resolved despite efforts to find common ground. The ensuing years were full of confusion, uncertainty and doubt. The term "outlaw" was used to describe our members and we had extreme difficulty finding competition. We lost some of our competitive teams to the G.T.H.L. and one of the founding members (Dorset Park) ceased operations. Their place in the S.H.A. was filled by the Scarborough East Hockey League (Scarborough Malvern Coyotes).
The early years outside organized hockey had little effect on the Scarborough Hockey Association and its memberclubs. However, we saw a slow erosion of player registration both in House League and Competitive. Because of these losses we could not support both "AA" and "A" programs. In addition, we lost another club as Clairlea ceased operations due to the drop in registration. Pressures began to mount to address the lack of affiliation and to rejoin the hockey community. After long and difficult discussions, a resolution was agreed upon and the S.H.A. returned to organized hockey under the jurisdiction of the G.T.H.L. effective with the 1985/1986 season.
During the years in exile and the dramatic shift in demographics in the early nineties brought with it a new set of problems. We failed to address them and player registration has been in a downward spiral which saw "Wexford" close its doors. The Scarborough Hockey Association currently has approximately 3000 players supporting 175 House League teams and 48 Competitive teams from the member clubs of: Agincourt Canadians, Agincourt Lions, Cedar Hill Rebels, Scarborough Malvern Coyotes, Scarborough Sabres, Scarborough Young Leafs and the West Hill Golden Hawks.
The 2008/09 season brought yet more changes to the SHA with Malvern Coyotes closing its house league due to declining registration. The remaining member clubs decided that if hockey were to be saved in Scarborough, an amalgamation of all clubs, therefore strengthening the house league, would be the best option. At this time, West Hill Golden Hawks applied for and received direct entry into the GTHL, thereby ending its association with the SHA at the end of the 2008/09 season. The remaining member clubs merged their house leagues, forming the Scarborough Youth Hockey League for the 2009/10 season.
The formation of the SYHL was a stepping stone towards a stronger hockey base in Scarborough. A merger of the Clubs’ remaining competitive teams at the end of the 2009/10 season has allowed the SHA to forge a new complete GTHL affiliated program with the Scarborough Ice Raiders (competitive “A” level teams in each age division), a complete select program within the NYHL and the houseleague program. These three divisions were amalgamated in the summer of 2010 to form the re-constituted league now known as the SHA Hockey Club.
Past Presidents of the SHA
- John Kelloway (2007-2010)
- Don Montgomery (1967-2007)
- George Sullivan (1965-1967)
- Scotty Magee (1962-1965)
- Don Jordan (1961-1962)
- Art Kilner (1960-1961)
- George Kitchen (1956-1960)