About Alumni

With over 100 years of ice hockey at the University, the club has seen many Dark Blue teams take to the ice. Previous players have hailed from many different countries and backgrounds, ranging from the great white north of Canada and Scandinavia, to southern hemisphere countries such as Australia and South Africa. Alumni often look back on their time at Oxford with fond memories of ice hockey, with the tour and Varsity Match being amongst the highlights of their playing days. Both of these hockey traditions are upheld by the Oxford University Ice Hockey Club today.

If you are a Dark Blue alumnus or alumna and wish to reconnect with the University club, please contact the OUIHC President on the contacts page and request to be added to the mailing list. Likewise, we would love to receive any accounts, stories or photos from your time in the Oxford University Ice Hockey Club.

Global Alumni Network

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Countries Represented
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Dark Blue Alumni
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First men’s Varsity Match
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First women’s Varsity Match

Alumni Profiles

Clarence S. Campbell

1926-29

Lincoln College 1926-29

Clarence S. Campbell, MBE, QC, Awarded the 1926 Rhodes Scholarship, Campbell captained the OUIHC during the 1928-1929 season. After graduating from Oxford, he worked as a lawyer and was an NHL referee in the 1930s. Campbell enlisted in the Canadian Infantry Corps Armoured Division during the Second World War and held the rank of Lieutenant Colonel and subsequently Major. He was a skilled lawyer and prosecuted former Nazi officials for crimes against humanity in the immediate post-war years. In 1945 he was made a Member of the Order of the British Empire and was appointed King’s Counsel in 1948. He served as the third president of the NHL from 1946 to 1977 and was honorary Chairman of the NHL from 1977 until his death in 1984. In 1967, the NHL trophy for the Western Conference playoff championship was named the Clarence S. Campbell Bowl in his honour. Campbell remained a strong supporter of the OUIHC and in the 1980s and 1970s rallied the alumni to donate funds when the Club was struggling.

Deborah Coyne

1980-82

Wadham College 1980-82

Deborah Coyne, came to the University of Oxford in 1980 as a Commonwealth Scholar to study for the MPhil in International Relations. In early 1981, Deborah Coyne founded the OUWIHC and was its first captain. Appropriately, Deborah Coyne is the daughter of John Coyne who re-established the OUIHC after the Second World War. Her uncle, James Coyne, had also played for Oxford in the 1930s and later became the second Governor of the Bank of Canada. Deborah Coyne contacted several women’s clubs and organised the first British women’s ice hockey league. Coyne also persuaded Cambridge to form a women’s ice hockey club of their own so that a women’s Varsity Match fixture could be established. Deborah’s younger sister, Barbara Coyne, attended the University of Cambridge, and was the goaltender for the CUWIHC in the 1985-1986 season. Deborah Coyne was a prominent figure in the Liberal Party and took a leading role in the opposition to the Meech Lake Accords. From 1989 to 1991, she served as an advisor to Newfoundland Premier Clyde Wells. In 2015, Coyne became the senior policy adviser to the Green Party leader Elizabeth May.

Alycia Wood

2012-13

Wycliffe Hall 2012-13

“Studying at Oxford was one of the highlights of my life and playing for the Oxford Women’s team was one of the reasons why. From the Town v. Gown to the Blues game, I still look back and smile at my experiences. Being one of two all-girls teams is not easy. You know that every game you play you will not be allowed to slack in any way. The pressure and speed from the opposition won’t back down and neither can you. It pushed you to work harder when your tank felt empty. Yet we were a close group of girls who fought together. Not only did we share many moments of laughter but friendships were formed that will hopefully last a lifetime. I have so many memories that I will cherish for years to come.”

Alexander MacIntyre

1951-55

Brasenose College 1951-55

Before coming to Brasenose College A.G.MacIntyre attended the University of Toronto. He then matriculated at Oxford (the formal ceremony of admittance as a member of the University) in 1951 and was an Oxford University Clinical Scholar and won the Radcliffe Infirmary Prize in Pathology and Surgery in 1954. Alexander was a member of the Phoenix Common Room (a Brasenose society and the oldest dining club in Oxford) and of Vincent’s Club, the University club for Blues and sportsmen. He represented the OUIHC in the ice hockey Varsity Match against Cambridge University and captained the side in 1952.

Past Teams

The 1980-81 Men’s Blues

“The [Varsity] game was a heart breaker as we narrowly lost 6-5 to Cambridge.  Gary Lawrence, fresh from Yale (front row with the tape made into a C) had followed the time honoured practice of not shaving for the whole season so as not to jinx our campaign.  Joe Grigely, with the other C and red cap,  formerly captain of the US Deaf team, never shaved either.  Returning veterans included Mike Moran (bottom right) a double rowing Blue, and Alfred Leblanc in goal wearing (naturally) a WHITE sweater.  We had shared out equitably the equipment owned by the team at our first team meeting, each choosing in turn to protect one part of their anatomy with the better piece of kit and then getting the pick of what was left for the rest.  Friends, relatives and cricket shops provided any missing vital pieces.

John MacBain (middle top row) was still smiling, no doubt plotting the next campaign.  No one knows why Ralph Osterworldt ’s (first left top row) hair is completely unruffled or why Bernie Mac Donnell (top second right) looks so unhappy.  Newcomers Dave King, Robert Drolet (first and second from left front) and Gary Lawrence have clearly done a lot of the work.

We all knew however why Joe Grigely repeatedly cleared the zone high up towards the middle of the rink rather than passing it.  We had agreed before the game for a substantial liquid payment for any player who shot down the disco glitter ball hanging where the scoreboard should have been.  He did come pretty close; Ron Collins (also unruffled blond hair, top row, whose idea it likely was) also tried.   Cambridge was baffled.” – The 1980-81 Men’s Blues

| Photo: OUIHC Blues 1980/81 – OUIHC ©

The 1981-82 Men’s Blues

“Oxford won in 1982  in another high scoring [Varsity] match.  We had taken things even more seriously although preparations for the game had pretty much gone as usual for our team in those pre-Oxford Ice Rink days, with practices in Bristol, Southampton or Richmond at midnight, and ball hockey drills on the tennis courts up the Iffley road.  But the frequency, bruises and pain had increased.  Playing on tennis courts is like street hockey but the space is more constrained and the fences are harder.  Our usual pre game routine of steak dinner the night before and carbo loading on spaghetti bolognese at lunch time had been rigorously followed.  We had borrowed all the latest coaching and dietary techniques from Gary Lawrence and probably also from Dave Keon’s “learn to play hockey” series.  Almost everyone had shaved their beards however.  But not Joe, still wearing his C from the previous years.

More importantly we had toured France and Switzerland during Christmas vacation after John MacBain (third from right bow row), co-captain that year with Gary Lawrence (middle front row with the Man of the Match cup) had organized to visit several strong local teams.  Despite the frugality of Oxford sports in those days (made even more frugal by the cost of the European trip) the team had just acquired a full set of matching sweaters after John had arranged for alumni to contribute to new equipment.  Our pants still did not all match but above the waist we looked and were sharp, and we were ready.  Bernie in goal probably helped as well.”  – The 1981-82 Men’s Blues

| Photo: OUIHC Blues 1981/82 – OUIHC ©

The 1982-83 Men’s Blues

“The 1983 Blues Match was an exceptional event as we drew 3-3, the highest ever scoring drawn match and only the third in the history of the competition and the first since 1920.  In those days Ice Hockey matches of the second division of the English National League South had to compete for rink owners’ attention with the free skating sessions held in a darkened rink with a mirrored ball above the ice so there was no time for overtime or penalty shot deciders.  Many in the capacity crowd in Peterborough witnessed the heart breaking few seconds when a defence mixup cost us the game with their rented figure skates on, waiting to hustle onto the ice themselves to the disco beat.  In typical fashion we had led all along; still we finished the 82-83 season top of our division.

On the picture we can still recognize the co-captains of that season, Dan Esty and Robert Drolet while the legendary Joe Grigely also wears a slightly modified “C” from a previous year (we understand there was a woman involved).  His lookalike (fifth from left top row) is the top goal scorer that year, Pierre Yves Boisvert and the other bearded player is Robert Desjardins next to him.  We posed with the trophy on the basis that Cambridge had not won it back from us after our victory the previous year! Robert (a lawyer) thought the argument sound and just to be sure held on to the cup.

1982-83 was also historic because the Oxford University Women’s Ice Hockey Club was formed that year by Debbie Coyne with Robert Drolet, one of the Men’s co-captains, as coach.  The team included top notch athletes from other sports teams as well as several Canadian women, some of whom could play pretty well.  Humble beginnings as the women were paired with players from the Men’s team to share equipment; this arrangement had two advantages:  the Men’s kit got washed much more often and the women raised money to get their own pretty quickly.  The women played Cambridge that year in Peterborough as well but the friendly match’s result is not remembered.”  – The 1982-83 Men’s Blues

| Photo: OUIHC Blues 1982/83 – OUIHC ©

The 2013-14 Vikings

This team may have enjoyed the most success of any OUIHC team since the teams of the 20’s and 30’s. The affectionately known ‘Vikes’ having come off a winning 2012-13 season went on to finish the ’13-’14 campaign with a perfect record of 18 wins, 0 losses and a staggering 167 goals for and 40 against. Finishing first in the southern league, dominating the National Championships despite division 1 opposition and sinking northern conference champions, the Northumbria Kings, 18-2 in the league final all pale in comparison to the epic Varsity encounter with the Cambridge Eskimos. Led by Norwegian Adrian Aambø (former Vålerenga player in top Norwegian league – Get Ligaen) and Canadian Naeem Bardai (NWJHL), the Vikings matched the Eskimos goal for goal with the top two Oxford forwards combining to win it at the last — 7-6. This victory had been long in the making as it had not been since 2001 (13 years) that Oxford had beaten Cambridge in this fixture. | Photo: OUIHC Men 2013-14 Squad photo – OUIHC ©

The 2014-15 Women’s Blues 

Considered to be the best Oxford Women’s Blues team in recent memory, the ladies in dark blue raised the standard of not only women’s university hockey but that of university non-checking hockey. Finishing second in the top division (non-checking) and narrowing missing out on the final of the National Championships is testament to the skill and hardwork that this years squad displayed. Led by the top defence in the league (Perkiö, Choi, Harding-Smith, Lam, McKendrick and Brawn) the most agile goaltender in arguably any university league (Kate Koch) and leading goalscorer (Lawrence – 45 goals in 16 games) the Blues dominated for the majority of the season en route to crushing Cambridge 25-0 in the Varsity Match. A record unlikely to be broken soon.

The success of the 2014-15 season has been in the making for a while and reflected in the leaps made over the past few seasons. Continuous strong recruitment, both of veterans and enthusiastic rookies, has paved the path of success for the Blues and now they are reaping the rewards. | Photo: OUIHC Women’s Blues 2014-15 Squad photo – OUIHC ©