- I decided to take the discussion about the terms sweater and jersey
to my Winnipeg 55+ oldtimers group on Thursday. Only one person used
the term jersey and all the rest of the oldtimers said they wore a
sweater. Next I asked a question about wearing equipment that caught
my eye in a book I got from the library titled Hockey for Weekend
Warriors. The book is aimed at potential and inexperienced hockey
players in the USA and includes several chapters about equipment and
how to wear it.
In a chapter about skates, the writer mentioned that it is
recommended that you put the tongue of your skate under your shin
pad. This caught my eye because in all my years of playing I never
ever heard where to put the tongue mentioned by anyone. I always put
my pads and sox on and then my skates with the tongue outside. So
this was my next question in the room.
I think the breakdown was almost 50-50. Some said they switched once
stirrups disappeared from the sox. Others said they started using
longer shin pads for protection and it seemed to make sense to put
the tongue inside. Others took exactly the opposite view and said
that longer shin pads were a good reason to have the tongue outside.
Not one had ever discussed the subject before, but one player did
say he remembered Don Cherry saying on TV to put it under the pad.
On Friday morning I picked up the paper and the largest photo on the
sports page showed a NHL player with the tongue outside.
As for CCM Tackaberry skates, I always heard them called Pros and
Tacks, not just Tacks, in reference to the blade and boot. Then when
CCM came out with the Super Tacks model, people would say they had
either a pair of Tacks or Super Tacks. The Pros reference seemed to
disappear around that time, but my memory could be faulty.
- In further search of the "hat trick," I found an interesting clip in
the L.A. Times of April 5, 1912 (page III3).
Now, this was about field hockey, not ice hockey. But, under the
headline "Los Angeles Hockey Squad to Play Duarte Ladies Team
Tomorrow at Vineyard," we discover that "The local captain [Miss
Marguerite Miller] performed the 'hat-trick' against Santa Monica, by
hitting three goals in succession off her own stick."
Just another instance of the migration of the term from cricket,
_and_ into a form of hockey.
The "Live Tips and Topics" feature in the Boston Globe of February
27, 1915 (p.4), applied it to athletics. Referring to a rivalry
between Evert Wendell of Yale and Alvin Kraenzlein of Penn, it was
noted that "Wendell and Kraenzlein were three-time winners in one
meet. That's what they would call the hat trick in England." The
column's author, known only as "Sportsman," habitually used "hat
trick" in this sense.
The Boston Globe also features a soccer reference as early as January
19, 1919 ("Trimo, Favorite, Soundly Beaten: Fore River Scores League
Soccer Victory, 7-0," p. 15): "Kershaw was trying all the time and he
at last got through, scoring his second goal. The same player came
through again later and scored his third goal, doing the hat trick."
A propos nothing, a soccer story in the Boston Globe of September 26,
1920, mentions a local team, the Quincy Maple Leafs. Neat.
Throughout the early '20s, the Boston Globe and L.A. Times use "hat
trick" liberally in a soccer context. However, it seems to appear in
the New York Times only in cricket reportage, which is becoming
increasingly rare in these major U.S. dailies. The NY Times finally
adopts this usage in the April 11, 1926, edition, in a story about a
soccer match between Pawtucket and Philadelphia ("Philadelphia Beaten
by Coats," New York Times, April 11, 1926, p. S8).
In 1928, Westbrook Pegler, who had yet to begin his attacks on FDR
and the New Deal (and every president through JFK), covered a
doubleheader between the Yankees and Red Sox -- the latter team
referred to in piquant fashion as the Nobodies. His use of hat trick
is interesting because it seems to describe a grand slam: "Earlier in
the same gay session Rothrock of the Nobodies had whipped a high,
humpbacked fly into the upper tier of the left field pavilion,
scoring Williams, Todt, and Berry in front of him. Berry had rushed
up as a pinch hitter for Settlemire, the Boston pitcher pro tem., and
had produced a single, scoring Regan, just before Rothrock performed
the hat trick." ("Yanks Nose Out Red Sox, 8 to 7, Then Lose, 4 to 3,"
Chicago Tribune, September 4, 1928, p. 28.)
An AP wire story in the June 16, 1929, Atlanta Constitution uses the
term in a horse-racing story. "The 'hat-trick,' the elusive
achievement for a jockey of winning three successive races, has been
performed several times on the world's racetracks but it was left to
Juan and Domingo Torterelo, brothers hailing from Buenos Aires but
campaigners on the French turf, to pull it off jointly as trainer and
jockey." ("Trainer-Rider Pair Takes Three in Row," Atlanta
Constitution, June 16, 1929, p. A3.)
By 1935, we finally see "hat trick" in an ice hockey story in a major
U.S. paper. Charles Bartlett, writing in the Chicago Tribune, covered
a 5-1 Blackhawk victory over the New York Americans that gave fourth-
place Chicago a playoff berth. Doc Romnes "indicated he's ready to go
by performing one of hocky's [sic] rare feats -- the hat trick --
which consists of scoring three goals in a game." ("Hawks Clinch Cup
Playoff Berth; Win, 5-1; Romnes Leads Rout of Americans," Chicago
Tribune, March 6, 1935, p. 21.)
Note that the Trib used the Blackhawk spelling. Then again, they also
referred to "hocky" and the "National Hocky league."
The AP generated a story that appeared in the December 14, 1936,
edition of the Washington Post: "Lude Wareing, speedy winger of the
New York Rovers, performed the 'hat trick' today, scoring three goals
to lead his team to a 4-to-3 victory over the Hershey B'ars in an
Eastern Amateur Hcokey League game played [in Madison Square Garden]
before 14,000 fans."
So, what does it all mean? "Hat trick," as a term meaning three of
anything -- particularly in succession -- migrated from coverage of
cricket to a wide range of other sports early in the 20th century. It
appeared widely in soccer coverage beginning after the First World
War. Sportswriters in Canada and the United States were familiar with
the term and, for some reason began to use it in hockey coverage
beginning in the late 1920s and especially in the early '30s.
If I had to hazard a guess as to why it popped up in the 1930s, I'd
have to say that, prior to World War I, ice hockey was a high-scoring
game, so instances of a player scoring three goals in a row may not
have been remarkable. It was not apparently as difficult as retiring
three straight batsmen in cricket. Perhaps the opening up of the game
in the 1920s, by allowing forward passing, made it possible for
forwards to do something that hadn't been possible for some time.
It's worth noting that, at this stage, we are still talking about a
hat trick as three goals in succession. The diminution of the term to
describe a three-goal game of any kind, well, I'm not quite there yet.
Lloyd Davis Communications
304-115 Danforth Avenue
Toronto, ON M4K 1N2 // 416 465 6999
- I promise this is as far as I'll take it for now.
On March 18, 1937, the New York Americans defeated Chicago 9-4.
Joseph C. Nichols of the New York Times credited three players in the
game with hat tricks ("Three players in last night's battle worked
the hat trick -- the scoring of three goals.") Note, not three goals
Indeed, the summary shows that none of the three (Sweeney Schriner
and Nels Stewart of the Americans, along with Paul Thompson of the
Hawks) registered what we'd call a "natural hat trick."
1. Americans, Schriner (Cunningham, Carr), 5:45
2. Americans, Stewart (Jerwa, Wiseman), 11:22
3. Americans, Schriner (Jenkins, Carr), 16:12
4. Americans, Stewart (Wiseman), 8:35
5. Chicago, Kelly (Gottselig, Klingbeil), 9:42
6. Americans, Leswick (Hemmerling), 12:07
7. Chicago, Thompson (Romnes), 18:59
8. Americans, Jerwa (Emms), 19:57
9. Americans, Stewart (Lamb), 0:23
10. Chicago, Thompson, 1:10
11. Americans, Schriner (Cunningham, Graham), 5:37
12. Chicago, Thompson (Romnes), 13:40
13. Americans, Wiseman (Jerwa), 13:54.
The busy goalers were Alfie Moore and Mike Karakas. The Amerks drew
only 5,000 to this match.
("Season's High Mark, 13-Goal Total, Set as Americans Win; Americans
Subdue Black Hawk Six, 9-4; Heavy Offensive Marks Last Appearance of
Victors at Garden This Season; Schriner Counts Thrice; Now a Point
Behind Apps for Scoring Laurels -- Leafs Top Canadiens, 2-1," New
York Times, March 19, 1937, page 31.)
Lloyd Davis Communications
304-115 Danforth Avenue
Toronto, ON M4K 1N2 // 416 465 6999