FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: Sport Wall of Fame 2023
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
October 11, 2023
From the Office of Mayor Brenda Chisholm-Beaton:
On behalf of Town Council, Town of Port Hawkesbury, Mayor Brenda Chisholm-Beaton is pleased to announce the 2023 inductees for the Port Hawkesbury Sports Wall of Fame. From an outstanding list of nominations, the Board has chosen one athlete, one builder and two teams.
Angus Francis “Frank” MacInnis ran in Maritime track and field competitions as a highly successful middle distance and relay runner at an elite level in the early to mid 1960’s. He ran for the Antigonish Highland Society at a time when the best athletes in the Maritime Provinces were on a seasonal circuit. Frank was on the Canada games Cross Country Ski Team and a member of the St. Francis Xavier cross country ski team. He played basketball and softball at the intermediate level on local teams and is a noted area horseman.
Michael John Ryan is to be inducted into the Port Hawkesbury Sports Wall of Fame as a builder. Mike began coaching baseball in Port Hawkesbury house leagues and moved up in level of competition to coach Mosquito, PeeWee, Bantam and Midget teams for ten years during which his teams won provincial silver medals four times, and in 2001 he coached the Midget “A” team to provincial gold and Atlantic silver medals. Mike also coached girls’ softball for three years and in 2005 coached the top team in Eastern Canada. He also was involved as manager of Bantam AAA Pirates.
The Strait Esso Flyers breezed to the Nova Scotia Provincial Intermediate “B” Baseball title in 1975 by winning four straight games, the final a 7 – 1 win over Weymouth. Five members of the Flyers were named to the tournament all-star team with John Keefe being named the top pitcher. The Flyers played Tidnish in the opening series of the Maritime Intermediate “B” Baseball Championship and won the deciding game of the best of three series with an exciting 8 – 7 victory. A 9 – 6 win over New Brunswick champions Lorneville secured the championship for the Flyers.
The 1909 Port Hawkesbury Junior Hockey Team won the 1909 Cape Breton Championship and is the first known team from Port Hawkesbury to be recognized as a championship team in any sport. On its way to the championship, Port Hawkesbury defeated Inverness with goalie Ray McCully in nets despite the fact he did not wear skates. Inverness lost the protest launched on the matter of the skateless Mr. McCully, and the Port Hawkesbury team went on to play a Sydney team that the champs beat 1 -0.
A Youth Award will be presented as part of the 2023 induction ceremonies. The award recognizes the contribution of youth who have attained prominence and distinction in any field of sport and who have made a major contribution to the development of sport in Port Hawkesbury. In 2023, the Town of Port Hawkesbury Sports Wall of Fame will honour Blake Marchand and Sara Pluta.