Challenge Cup

OVC Challenge Cup Hockey History

Hockey has been a part of OVC student life for more than a century. In the early 1900s OVC college teams challenged other University of Toronto colleges, and after the move to Guelph in 1922 the "Vets" played in the Guelph City Hockey League and competed against Ontario Agricultural College teams before joining them at the intercollegiate level as the OAVC Redmen. Since the founding of the University of Guelph in 1964, varsity-calibre players from the college have played for the Guelph Gryphons.

 Vet Champions, 1931OVC-1990-MA_1987-Champs 

In 1931 the popularity of informal hockey games between DVM classes inspired Principal C. D. McGilvray to establish an annual inter-class tournament by donating an award, which was won by Year '32. Inter-class hockey has continued uninterrupted since that time, becoming known in the 1970s as the OVC "Challenge Cup" hockey tournament. An estimated 2,000 DVM students have participated in Challenge Cup hockey over the past 80 years, with up to 6 teams per class taking part during the 1980s. Faculty/staff teams have also participated from time to time, and in 2011 a new student-vs.-staff division was established. OVC Challenge Cup, which celebrates its 80th anniversary in 2012, is the oldest veterinary hockey tournament in the world.


Women Win Challenge Cup, 1992-1993OVC Alumni Hockey Tournament

The popularity of the student tournament led, in 1991, to the establishment of a separate OVC Alumni Hockey Tournament, which has attracted graduates from as far away as Hong Kong. The alumni tournament takes place in late March or early April and attracts approximately 150-200 OVC grads per year, rivaling any other alumni event.


OVC Challenge Cup Hockey Records

  • First Challenge Cup champions (1932): OVC'32
  • Longest undefeated streak: OVC'52; four years (undefeated in intramural and inter-class hockey throughout their 4-year DVM program; challenged and defeated the OVC college hockey team)
  •  First class to have a women's hockey team: OVC'78Female Hockey Team, 1990s
  • First winners of Women's division of Challenge Cup (1977): OVC'79
  • First class to declare a team mascot: OVC'82 "Toros"
  • Only class known to have won a Challenge Cup championship after graduation: OVC'82 Toros (Women's team, in 1983)
  • Longest shoot-out to decide a game between OVC classes: 20 shots (1986; Ian Buffett of the OVC'89 Panthers Men's "C" team scored on the 20th penalty shot to beat the OVC'87 Falcons)
  • Earliest known winners of Men's "B" division of Challenge Cup (1985): OVC'88 Wolves
  • Most hockey teams in a single class: OVC'89 Panthers (Six; two Men's A, one Men's B, one Men's C, one Women's A and one Women's B team)
  • First winners of Women's "B" division of Challenge Cup (1988): OVC'92 Tigers OVC-2011w-vs-OVC-2013w_2011-March
  • Most Challenge Cup championships for a single team: OVC'95 Falcons (5 straight wins by the Men's A team)
  • Most Challenge Cup championships for a single class: OVC'89 Panthers (Eight; four Men's A, one Men's B, three Women's)
  • Most Challenge Cup championships for a single class in a single year: OVC'89 Panthers (Three; Men's A, Men's B, and Women's divisions in 1986)
  • First class to win Co-ed division (2008): OVC'11 Black Mambas
  • First winners of the Co-ed student-vs.-staff division of Challenge Cup (2011): OVC'13 Phoenixes
  • First winners of the Women's student-vs.-staff division of Challenge Cup (2011): Old Maids