The Western Canada Junior Hockey League was a Junior A hockey league that played in the Canadian provinces of Alberta & Saskatchewan from 1948-49 through 1955-56. It had no direct connection to the Western Canada Junior Hockey League that started play in the late 1960's. Its teams were eligible for the Memorial Cup.
History[edit | edit source]
This league was formed in the 1948-49 season. The Moose Jaw Canucks and Regina Pats were dominating their opponents in the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League and needed some different competition. In Alberta, Edmonton jealously guarded its own city league, leaving the southern teams with a lack of competition.
With the permission of their provincial Amateur Hockey Associations, the southern Alberta teams and Regina and Moose Jaw got together to form the Western Canada League. The Northern Saskatchewan Junior League was formed with the balance of the teams in Saskatchewan.
In the first season, the provincial AHA's insisted that all the teams qualify for the Memorial Cup playoffs through their own province. In the second and all subsequent seasons, the league champions went on to the Memorial Cup playoffs as the Alberta champion, since the league operated under the Alberta Amateur Hockey Association.
The league never won a Memorial Cup but its teams made the Cup finals five times. Regiona lost the final in 1950, 1952. 1955 and 1956 while Edmonton lost the 1954 final.
In 1951-52, the Edmonton City Junior League of three teams folded and one single team was formed - Edmonton Oil Kings - which joined the league.
Crows Nest Pass folded after the 52-53 season, Calgary after the 53-54 season and Moose Jaw after the 54-55 season. After the 55-56 season the Regina Pats rejoined the Saskatchewan Junior Hockey League and the Edmonton Oil Kings joined the Central Alberta Hockey League (intermediate). Lethbridge and Medicine Hat folded and the league was finished.
Member teams[edit | edit source]
- Bellevue Lions 1948-49 (became Crows Nest Pass Lions)
- Calgary Buffalos 1948-49 to 1953-54 (folded)
- Crows Nest Pass Lions 1949-50 to 1950-51 (became Crows Nest Pass Coalers)
- Crows Nest Pass Coalers 1951-52 to 1952-53 (folded)
- Edmonton Oil Kings 1951-52 to 1955-56
- Lethbridge Native Sons 1948-49 to 1955-56
- Medicine Hat Tigers 1948-49 to 1955-56
- Moose Jaw Canucks 1948-49 to 1954-55 (folded)
- Regina Pats 1948-49 to 1955-56
List of Seasons[edit | edit source]
- WCJHL 1948-49
- WCJHL 1949-50
- WCJHL 1950-51
- WCJHL 1951-52
- WCJHL 1952-53
- WCJHL 1953-54
- WCJHL 1954-55
- WCJHL 1955-56
Regular Season Champions[edit | edit source]
- 1948-49 Calgary Buffalos
- 1949-50 Lethbridge Native Sons
- 1950-51 Lethbridge Native Sons
- 1951-52 Regina Pats
- 1952-53 Edmonton Oil Kings
- 1953-54 Edmonton Oil Kings
- 1954-55 Regina Pats
- 1955-56 Regina Pats