The selection committee of the Hamilton Soccer Hall of Fame
is proud to present the Class of 2014!
  • Kevin Grant
    Kevin Grant
    Player Category
    Kevin Grant Bio
  • A.E. Tiny THOMBS
    A.E. "Tiny" THOMBS
    Player Category
    A.E. Tiny THOMBS Bio
  • Richard Bennett
    Richard Bennett
    Player Category
    Richard Bennett Bio
  • Malcolm Spence
    Malcolm Spence
    Builder Category
    Malcolm Spence Bio
  • Don Lovegrove
    Don Lovegrove
    Builder Category
    Don Lovegrove Bio
     
  • Cliff Marshall
    Cliff Marshall
    Builder Category
    Cliff Marshall Bio
     
  • 1970 Hamilton Italo Canadians
    1970 Hamilton
    Italo Canadians

    Team of Distinction
    1970 Hamilton Italo Canadians Bio
  • Hamilton Serbians
    Hamilton Serbians
    Club of Distinction
    Hamilton Serbians Bio
     
  • Hamilton St. Mary's Woman Soccer Program
    Hamilton St. Mary's
    Woman Soccer Program

    High School Program
    Hamilton St. Mary's Woman Soccer Program Bio
  • Bill Knox
    Bill Knox
    Referee Category
    Bill Knox Bio
     

Kevin GrantKevin Grant

Kevin Grant arrived in Burlington in 1967, emigrating from England, and began his playing career in Burlington the same year. In 1968, Kevin played for the East Hamilton Cougars, under Coach Harry Newman. Over his career, Kevin played for the East Hamilton Legion 58, Hamilton Croatia, Hamilton Italy-Canadians and the Hamilton Steelers. From 1972 through 1981, Kevin also represented Ontario as the captain of the Ontario Provincial Selects.

While playing with Hamilton Croatia, Kevin was called up to the Canadian National team, where he was a regular from 1971 through 1976. During Kevin’s time with the Canadian National team, he participated in the 1972 World Cup qualifying round, the 1974 Pan-Am Games and the 1976 Montreal Olympic Games. In total, Kevin amassed 26 caps with the National squad participating in international matches throughout Europe and Central America.

Currently, Kevin holds a CSA Level B coaching license and has had the honor of coaching in the National Soccer League, CPSL , CSL and the Inner City League. In 1981, Kevin coached the Ontario U18 boys select team to National Championship then followed, in 1986, with a National Championship as coach of the Hamilton Steelers.

Most recently, Kevin counties to coach and was the coach for a Canadian team participating in the World Masters Games in Turin, Italy, where the team won a silver medal. Kevin was recently inducted in to the Burlington Youth Soccer Club Hall of Fame. Kevin is also the owner and operator of Burlington Soccer Supplies.

A.E. Tiny THOMBSA.E. "Tiny" THOMBS

A.E. "Tiny" Thombs – Was born in Henley, England, 1882. Tiny, as he was always known, was a star in Hamilton soccer during the early years of the 1900s. While still living in England, he received some flattering offers from some of the professional clubs to play for them, but chose to come to Canada and Hamilton where he played most of his career with the great Westinghouse team. For many years Thombs was without equal in Canada as an outside left and he played for Hamilton against the Pilgrims in 1905, Corinthians in 1906 and the Corinthians again in 1911, scoring in all three games. He also played for Ontario and for a Canadian all-star team against a Scottish F.A. team in Montreal in 1921. If there had been a Canadian national team in those days he would almost certainly have played for Canada. Tiny was a member of the Westinghouse team that won the Ontario Cup in 1911, 1912 and 1920 and also the Canadian championship in 1920. In 1924 the City of Hamilton showed it's appreciation by staging a testimonial game in his honor. Tiny worked for Westinghouse for 35 years and retired on February 4th, 1950. Albert "Tiny" Thombs passed away in Hamilton, Ontario, September 30, 1957.

Richard BennettRichard Bennett

Richard Bennett was born in Savanna-La-Mar, Jamaica in 1958. He arrived in Canada in 1977 and started playing for Binbrook F.C. As Richard’s reputation grew and his talents were noticed by many teams around the league, he played on such teams as: Hamilton Serbians, Serbian White Eagles of the NSL, Hamilton Steelers, Hamilton United and Hamilton Slovenia. His longevity as a player saw him play in the Men’s Premier Division until the age of 50. Richard is now playing in the largest Old Timers league in Canada with Proto. Richard also plays for the Classics in Burlington over 35 League.

Richard has lifted his fair share of trophies over the years: 5 Spectator Cups, HSSL Champion, HSSL League Cup, HSSL Playoff Champion, OTSL Champion and numerous team Most Valuable Player awards.

Richard is also a very successful coach. He currently holds a CSA “C” License and has been the Head Coach for Mohawk College Men’s team for the past 14 years. While at Mohawk he has won a bronze medal in 2003 in the OCAA Provincial finals, been named coach of the year twice in the Western Division and was also nominated for National Coach of the year. Richard was also a coach with Michelangelo S.C. in the Hamilton Premier League where he won the HSSL Treble in 2002. Richard has coached in the youth sector for Mt. Hamilton and with CANUSA.

Richard currently resides in Hamilton with his wife Arlene and his 3 children: Ian, Andre and Josh.

Malcolm SpenceMalcolm Spence

Malcolm Spence was born on August 15 1943 in London, England and left for Canada on the very day that and ‘Hurricane Hazel’ hit Hamilton, October 5, 1954. Malcolm brought with him a love of team sports. In his teens and twenties, he played full-back for the Hamilton Hornets Rugby Football League and then, after one too many tackles, switched to soccer, initially with the White Caps of the Hamilton and District Old Timers Soccer League.

Despite loving to be a player, Malcolm’s real strength is best exemplifies in his dedication to the administrative and organizational part of the game. In 1980, Malcolm attended a meeting where the Binbrook Optimists were supporting the start up of soccer in Binbrook. His initial intention was to get his son [then just 5 years old] involved in playing soccer. He came back from the meeting as a Coach and member of the Executive and continued in both capacities for many years while continuing to play soccer himself. From an initial 180 children, what is now the Glanbrook Youth Soccer Club has seen enormous growth and Malcolm was proud to have been able to be a part of it.

Even after his son left home for university, Malcolm continued to coach and be part of the executive as his nephews moved through the various divisions. His dedication to the sport is exemplified by the fact that before every practice, he prepared a ‘lesson plan’ so intent was he that his charges would improve get as much out of the sport as possible. Some of his early soccer ‘students’ are now in the ‘Old-timers’ League.

Malcolm has been a player and executive member of the Hamilton and District Old-timers Soccer League for most of the 25 years of its existence. He has held the position of President for 10 years and in that time has seen the league grow to a thousand players on the field every Sunday morning. The league is now the largest league in Canada for players over the age of 45.

Since, his retirement, Malcolm has continued to devote much time trying to make sure that players have all that is necessary to keep them actively engaged in and enjoying soccer. He always espouses that strict discipline and adherence to the principles of ‘fair play’ will ensure that players and referees return safely to their families and their jobs following the games. As an immigrant himself to Canada, Malcolm recognizes that for many players, their teammates are both a welcome reminder of their homeland and a way to integrate into Canadian life.

The Hamilton and District Old-timers’ Soccer League has been most fortunate in having Malcolm in the leadership position and can be recognized as a ‘Builder’ of soccer.

Don LovegroveDon Lovegrove

Don worked at the Hamilton Spectator for over 30 years as a journalist. He excelled as a sports writer and is legendary in the Hamilton Soccer Community for his coverage of the sport and keeping his readers well informed while also promoting the game of soccer. Throughout his career Don covered the largest sporting events in the world including the 1986 World Cup in Mexico where he witnessed the “Hand of God” goal by Diego Maradona. Don also covered the Summer and Winter Olympics in Canada.

Don was responsible for making sure the local soccer fans in Hamilton were kept up to date on results and events on a regular basis. Don’s informative and fair coverage of the Hamilton soccer scene was a major factor in raising the profile of many players and teams in the community. Don Lovegrove is held in the highest regard in the Hamilton soccer community and remains a key figure in the growth of the sport in Hamilton.

Cliff MarshallCliff Marshall

Cliff Marshall was born in England in 1921. He eventually immigrated to Canada with his wife, Ethel. Cliff, Ethel and their three children lived on the Hamilton Mountain on West 34th Street. Their house, a modest one floor bungalow was to become the original meeting hall, storage centre and registration location for the eventual MHYSC.

Cliff was an avid soccer fan and supported many clubs back home in England. In 1964, upon a return trip from England, Cliff began his journey and quest to ensure that the beautiful game was made available to the youth in the area. Cliff began the Lynden Park Soccer Club, originally two teams made up of young children from various child and youth ages, predominantly from the Lynden Park Church. . For the first time in this area, nets, uniforms, proper balls and coaching was available. As neighborhood kids began to notice and word spread, the league soon grew by leaps and bounds playing at both grass fields near Macassa Lodge Retirement Home and Hill Park High School.

In the mid 1960’s Cliff also arranged for teams from a nearby Chicago suburb area (Palatine Celtic Soccer Club) to play here in Hamilton. Originally only boy’s teams made the trip but soon Cliff added females to the group thereby making soccer inclusive for all. The trip to Chicago continued every other year for approximately 30 years. Cliff is the founder of the MHYSC. He served as President (both Lynden Park and MHYSC) from 1964 – 1977.

Today, the MHYSC is one of the largest soccer clubs in the City of Hamilton. Cliff’s original efforts in organizing two teams have resulted in a program that he is responsible for growing to over 200 teams and approximately 3000 youth. The MHYSC honors Cliff Marshall each year since 2002, with the annual Cliff Marshal Memorial Tournament. Tens of thousands of children have participated in this tournament as a tribute for all his dedicated work for children in the Hamilton Mountain Community.

Cliff Marshall 1921 - 2002

"We do this for the kids"

1970 Hamilton Italo Canadians1970 Hamilton Italo Canadians

The 1970 Italo-Canadian’s was the first successful all Canadian team in a time when waves of accomplished soccer playing immigrants were stacking very strong ethnic clubs. The Inter City Soccer League based in Hamilton and run by Hamiltonians, the likes of Bill Rutlidge, Alex Fotheringham and John Brown was the undisputable premier amateur league in the province. All the Italo-Canadian players with the exception of the Quaglia brothers, who had some Italian training, grew up on the Canadian soccer youth system.

The Italo-Canadian team was a part and parcel of the Unione Sportiva Italo Canadese or USIC Club in the Barton and Sherman St area. The club President was Guy Civello. The merit goes to that fine organization of sports loving Italian immigrants, led by our soccer manager Nino Craboledda and manager Claudio Pante, for a job well done in a labor of love and pride.

As a member of the powerful Inter-City Soccer League, the 1970 Italo-Canadians were crowned League Champions by winning 16 games in a row. That year, the Italo-Canadians also won the coveted Spectator Cup, emblematic of soccer supremacy in the area.

The highlight of the season, however, was winning the Ontario Cup and officially putting claim to being the best in Ontario by beating Toronto Irish 1-0 in the return game at Hamilton Civic Stadium, subsequently renamed Ivor Wynne. The opening kickoff was performed by the then Minister of Health and Welfare John Munroe, with the participation of Hamilton mayor Vic Copps and the Vice council of Italy signor Di Vincenzo. The game was decided in the 59th minute on a goal by Frank Cirillo. To quote Don Lovegrove of the Hamilton Spectator,” Cirillo unleashed a low shot between two defenders that went into the bottom corner of the goal.” To the jubilation of the players and over 2000 fans, the Ontario Cup finally came back to Hamilton after an 11 year absence, having been last won by Hamilton City. After winning the treble consisting of the League Cup, the Spectator Cup and the Ontario Cup, there was no Canadian Challenge Cup played that year. The team was coached by Camillo Ianieri and trained by Jim Beattie.

TEAM ROSTER: Ardo Perri, Tony Marino, Sam Pennetti, Jimmy Cirillo, Frank Riga, Ray Trevisan, Nelson Pratas, Frank Cirillo, Charlie Balaz, Gabriele Quaglia, Marcel Di Ianni, Domenic Quaglia, Stan Dozzi, Lucien Salvi, Giulio Di Giandomenico, Domenic Zaffiro.

Hamilton SerbiansHamilton Serbians

Formed in 1958, the Hamilton Serbians Soccer Club has provided some memorable moments throughout most of their history. By 1962, the Hamilton Serbians were League Champions and finalists for both the Spectator and Ontario Cup.

Overall, the club has won 11 Spectator Cup titles (1973, 1975, 1981, 1982, 1983, 1998, 2006, 2008, and 2010,2011, 2013) along with two Ontario Cup championships (1982 & 1998). They have also been finalists and semi-finalists numerous times in each of these tournaments. Over the years, the club has also won numerous League and League Cup titles and several Skyway Cup championships.

Many people deserve credit for building and maintaining this pride of the Hamilton Serbian community. The Hamilton Serbians Soccer Club is one of the oldest and longest running amateur soccer organizations in Ontario. Other teams, with similar longevity, have either temporarily ceased operations for a season or have altered their name.

The honour roll includes those who were involved as builders, management, coaching and held other important duties. These men are Slavko Knezevic, Branko Cosic, Dragan Banjac, Arandjel Stojanovic, Dusan Bjelic, Milos Boljanic, Gavro Gavrilovic, Bobby Rusich, Bozo Pavkovic, Tom Rusich, Tomo Zikic, Petar Vrakela, Roy Cavic, Ranko Popovic, Dmitar Radivojsa, Zeljko "Ziggy" Milojevic, Dan Duvnjak and Drasko Zdero.

Numerous players in the history of the club, both Serbian and non-Serbian have also contributed greatly to the success of the club which is held in high regard in Hamilton and in North America.

Hamilton St. Mary's Woman Soccer ProgramHamilton St. Mary's Woman Soccer Program

St. Mary Catholic Secondary School is located in Hamilton Ontario, the heart of the Golden Horseshoe. St. Mary was founded in 1970. The school services the needs of the Catholic community in Westdale, Dundas and all parts of Waterdown. The school and the soccer program share the same motto : “Live, Love, Learn”

The St. Mary CSS Crusaders Woman’s’ Soccer team is the most successful program in the city of Hamilton. The Crusaders have put together a string of 38 successive winning seasons and a stretch of 14 consecutive City Championship Games in the HWCDSB league between 1991 and 2005. The team captured its 13th outdoor soccer championship in 2010. The team has captured 2 Indoor titles officially and finalists two other times in the last 6 years. Previous to that the Crusaders captured 10 unofficial Indoor City Championships.

The Crusader program was coached in the early years by Henry Malon and then taken over by Sean Kiely in 1984 and is presently led by John Ivinac. The team has had many players continue their athletic pursuits at the University level in Soccer, Basketball and Volleyball.

The Crusaders have captured 2 OFSAA Championships (2000 & 2006), 1 silver, 3 bronze, and 1 Antique medal provincially and twice ¼ Finalists.

The school soccer team has made a point of seeing the world through athletics and academics. The team has travelled abroad 5 times, twice to the United Kingdom in 1990 and 1999 and 3 times to Italy in 2005, 2008 and 2012. The program in conjunction with its fellow Catholic schools has played host to the OFSAA provincial championships 6 times, at both AAA and Quad A levels and most recently in 2012.

The championships and field successes are rewarding but the most gratifying experiences have been the success of our players in life after soccer. Most have gone on to be winners in the field of life as professionals in every field of life, not just sport.

Bill KnoxBill Knox

Bill Knox was born in Glasgow Scotland in 1918. He started playing soccer at a very young age with church leagues and continued to work his way up the ranks of amateur football.

Bill Knox turned professional and played for Hull City and Cowdenbeath before World War 2 broke out. Bill did play 3 games for the Rangers Reserves, a team which he had supported loyally his life. During the war, Bill continued to play soccer while he served in the Royal Navy for 5 years.

Bill immigrated to Canada in 1952 and played for the powerful Westinghouse team in Hamilton where he also enjoyed great success. When he retired as a player, Bill turned to officiating and in 1958 he became and international referee and President of the Ontario Referees Association. Bill was called upon to referee games all over the northern part of the United States and Canada. Bill is legendary in the Hamilton area for being a fair and professional official and is considered one of the best the area has ever known.

Bill Knox was also involved in coaching at McMaster University. In 1953 he became the head coach for the men’s team where he remained for 21 years, While at Mac; the team won the OQUAA title in 1963 and the OUAA crown in 1971 and 1974. Bill Knox was inducted into the McMaster Hall of Fame in 1986. He also coached the Hamilton Cougars.

Bill Knox passed away in 1991.

Congratulations to All Inductees!.