Connaught Series: Verdun Park win 1934 Championship
Posted on 10 September 2017 in Around the Soccer World
In 1934, Canada's national honours returned to Québec for the first time in five years as Verdun Park FC won the Dominion of Canada Football Championship over Prince Albert Raiders. With back-to-back winners Toronto Scottish FC already eliminated, Verdun Park FC needed five matches to win the eastern title over Sudbury Frood Mines.
While Verdun Park FC won the east, Prince Albert City won the west for the second year in a row. This time, the team from Saskatchewan knocked off famous clubs Westminster Royals FC (with star Coulter injured) and Winnipeg United Weston FC. In the Dominion final, Verdun Park FC beat Prince Albert to capture the honours. Two of Verdun’s biggest names were Larry Fitzpatrick, the tournament’s leading goalscorer, and Roland “Dempsey” Castonguay, the 21-year old breakout star and tournament hero.
Verdun Park FC’s national laurels lasted only the one winter, with the club folding before the start of the 1935 season in Montréal. Out of their shadows, the new Québec representatives in the Connaught Series were Montréal Aldred, who featured four former Verdun players and four former CNR players.
STORY OF THE 1934 CHAMPIONSHIP
Verdun Park FC were an emerging team in the east before they put it all together to win the 1934 Dominion of Canada Championship. Led by the goalscoring exploits of Larry Fitzpatrick and the ‘entertaining antics’ of Roland Castonguay, the Verdun-based club eliminated Sudbury Frood Mines and beat Prince Albert City Reds to capture the Dominion title.
Fitzpatrick and Castonguay were involved in seven of Verdun’s nine goals in the Dominion final. Castonguay was the hero of the series. After splitting the first two matches, Verdun Park FC captured the laurels with a 4:1 win in the third and final match.
Fitzpatrick was one of four brothers that featured in the 1934 playdowns, with Larry and Charlie the two regulars. As for Verdun Park FC, this would be their only title as the franchise folded before the following year.
CHAMPIONSHIP WINNING GOAL • ROLAND CASTONGUAY
Verdun Park’s 21-year old outside left Roland “Dempsey” Castonguay scored the series-winning goal in the 1934 Championship final. He scored on a header from a Billy Holmshaw free kick midway through the first half of a 4:1 win.
TOP SCORER • LARRY FITZPATRICK
Montréal’s 28-year old Larry Fitzpatrick scored eight goals in eight matches during the 1934 Championship, including three in the final. Winnipeg’s Eddie Hodgert ranked second with seven goals scored.
CHALLENGE TROPHY • CAPTAIN HUMPHREY PAYNE
For the second year in a row, John Easton of Winnipeg, past president of the Dominion of Canada Football Association, made the official presentation of the Challenge Trophy to the winning team.
In celebration of our nation's 150th anniversary, the Canada Soccer Hall of Fame pays tribute to the early years of our Championship: the Connaught Series from 1913 to 1939. Every Sunday from May through September, Canada Soccer remembers the players, legends, teams, and champions from a golden era of football in the Dominion.
In Canada's 150th year, Canada Soccer will crown their 150th national champions across all adult and professional competitions since 1913. The 2017 competitive season will crown the Futsal Canadian Championship winners in April, the professional Canadian Championship winners in June, and the amateur National Championships women's Jubilee Trophy and men's Challenge Trophy winners in October.