Champion Rams set for enshrinement

Adam
Adam Hawboldt
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Riverside Collegiate's 1970 provincial gridiron champions enter Hall of Fame

It was a game Bill Watson won't soon forget.

In the fall of 1970, Watson's Riverside Rams travelled to Soldiers' Field in Moose Jaw to take the Notre Dame Hounds in the 3A Saskatchewan high school football championship.

"Back then Notre Dame had a very good football team," said Watson, who coached the Rams for 10 seasons, "and I think they might have taken us lightly."

Champion Rams set for enshrinement

It was a game Bill Watson won't soon forget.

In the fall of 1970, Watson's Riverside Rams travelled to Soldiers' Field in Moose Jaw to take the Notre Dame Hounds in the 3A Saskatchewan high school football championship.

"Back then Notre Dame had a very good football team," said Watson, who coached the Rams for 10 seasons, "and I think they might have taken us lightly."

So lightly in fact, they allowed the Rams - with their "three yards and a cloud of dust" offence - to storm out of the gates and build an early lead.

Eventually, however, Notre Dame woke up and gave the Rams a run, but the damage Riverside's offence inflicted in the early going was too much to overcome.

On the back of Alan Logue's three touchdowns, the Rams pulled out a hard-fought 32-12 victory, and with it the only provincial football title in the school's history.

"When that game ended it was the highlight of my season, for sure," said Watson. "It's not easy to win a provincial championship game."

Nor was it easy to build the 1970 Riverside Rams into the class of Saskatchewan 3A football.

Because they weren't blessed with a squad full of superstars or even a plethora of talent, Watson along with fellow coaches Howard Gange and Bob Reed spent countless hours working with the Rams on the gridiron at Riverside Collegiate.

"We practised a lot, more than most teams," said Watson. "During the season we would practice twice a day, every day. The first practice was at noon hour and the next was after school."

Those hours of practicing paid off as the Rams developed the one intangible that all true champions in any sport seem to possess - team chemistry.

"They were a bunch of coachable young men with tremendous work ethic," said Watson. "And all that practising helped them become a real team in every sense of the word. They may not have been the best bunch I've ever coached, but they certainly were the most successful team."

And now, as a team, the 1970 Riverside Rams are about to receive the highest honour this city can bestow upon them: induction on Saturday into the Prince Albert Sports Hall of Fame.

It is an honour Watson is more than pleased with.

"I'm an extremely proud and happy for them," he said.

For ticket information on the Hall of Fame induction dinner and ceremonies, call Heather Wilson-Emery at 763-2337.

ahawboldt@paherald.sk.ca




hall of fame class of 2008

The Prince Albert Sports Hall of Fame induction dinner will be held Saturday in the Ches Leach Lounge at the Art Hauser Centre.
The 2008 inductees include:
Athletes: Richard "Chick" Balon (hockey); "Curly" Ray Fiddler (boxing).
Athlete/builder: Felix Casavant (softball).
Builder: Pat Bibby (curling).
Meritorious service to sport: founders of the Prince Albert Sports Council - Darlene Chartrand, Ross McIntosh, Robert Pilon.
Teams: 1970 Riverside Rams (football); 1971 St. Mary Marauders (football).
Cocktails will start at 6 p.m. and dinner will be served at 7 p.m., followed by the induction ceremony.

Organizations: Prince Albert, Art Hauser Centre

Geographic location: Notre Dame, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan Riverside

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  • stan
    November 18, 2009 - 21:17

    a very deserving coaching team and a great football team. ra ra