Seattle Eskimos & Seahawks

 

There is almost no information available about the era between the demise of the Seattle Metropolitans of the Pacific Coast Hockey Association in 1924 and the re-birth of the professional Pacific Coast Hockey League in 1945. 

The first incarnation of the Pacific Coast Hockey League (PCHL) was founded in 1928 as a four team semi-professional league.  There were teams in Vancouver, Seattle, Portland and Victoria.  The league lasted through the 1930-31 season, only to "disappear" for a couple of years.  It reappeared in 1933 as the North West Hockey League (NWHL), this time with franchises in Calgary, Edmonton, Vancouver, Seattle and Portland.

The NWHL hung on for three seasons, eventually losing it’s teams in central Canada and reforming again as the PCHL for the 1936-37 season.  Spokane, Seattle, Portland and Vancouver populated the league until its demise at the end of the 1940-41 campaign.

Four lovely ladies in Seattle Eskimos uniforms, circa 1930

 


1928-29 – The Seattle Eskimos finished second in the four team league with a 17-17-2 record behind the league champion Vancouver Lions.  Cecil Browne led the team in scoring with 23 goals and 6 assists, second best in the league.

1929-30 – The Eskimos dropped to third in the standings with a 15-13-8 mark.  Cecil Browne was the league leading scorer with 12 goals and 10 assists.  Vancouver again was the league champion.

1930-31 – In the last season of the first incarnation of the PCHL, the Eskimos finished with the best record in the regular season, posting a 16-9-9 record.  Tony Savage paced the offense with 11 goals and 5 assists, for the second highest totals in the PCHL.  They were defeated in the playoffs by Vancouver, league champions for a third straight year.

1933-34 – The NWHL took over where the PCHL left off, fielding a five team league.  Attorney John Lycette purchased the Seattle franchise, and the Seattle Seahawks (also written as Sea Hawks) finished fourth, 15-17-2.  Hal Tabor was the offensive leader with 19 goals and 6 assists.

1934-35 – The Seahawks were able to turn it around and finished first in the league during the regular season, going 20-9-3.  Hal Tabor led the team in scoring for the second straight year with his 24 goal, 16 assist effort (some sources show Tabor with 22 goals and 16 assists).  They weren’t good enough in the playoffs though, and the third place Vancouver Lions won the league championship.

1935-36 – In the last season of the NWHL, Seattle again finished first in the regular season with a 19-14-6 record.  This time they were able to maintain their winning ways, and also won the playoffs to become the league champions.  For the third year in a row Hal Tabor led the team in scoring with 25 goals and 12 assists.

1936-37 – The PCHL is resurrected as a four team league, and the Seahawks finish dead last with a poor 13-21-4 showing.  Sam McAdam was the team’s leading scorer with 18 goals and 9 assists.

1937-38 – The Seahawks go from first to worst by completing the regular season in first place at 20-14-8 and winning the post season playoffs.  Dave Downie was the team’s offensive star, his 17 goals and 19 assists good enough for second best in the league.

1938-39 – Seattle slipped a little from the previous season with a second place 21-21-6 record, finishing behind the regular season and playoff champion Portland Buckaroos.  Dave Downie once again led the team in scoring and finished second in the league scoring race with a 35 goal,  29 assist effort.

1939-40 – The league contracted to three teams with the loss of the Spokane franchise, and the Seahawks finished last with a 16-21-3 mark.  Even though he was on the worst team in the league, Dave Downie was the scoring champ with 22 goals and 26 assists.

1940-41 – Spokane returns to the fold to take it all during the regular season, but they are not strong enough to hold off second place Vancouver in the playoffs.  The renamed Seattle Olympics finish in third at 20-21-7, with Frank Daley’s 28 goals and 31 assists leading the way.

During the war years there were no professional or semi-professional leagues around.  The amateur city leagues (right) continued on with a small group of company sponsored teams, including one from Boeing.  The Northwest wouldn’t have a high level of hockey again until the PCHL returned for the 1945-46 season and brought the Seattle Ironmen to town.

 

1939-40 Seattle Sea Hawks

 

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