Above: The 1968 3-Field hockey team stormed through three zone games to earn a trip to the first ever national military hockey championships in Petawawa

Klassen and 3-Field entering Chilliwack Sports Hall of Fame

The 1968 3-Field hockey team is joined by the best football player ever produced by Chilliwack in the class of 2014.

The Chilliwack Sports Hall of Fame revealed its class of 2014 Tuesday.

One team and one individual will go in this year, with the induction ceremony taking place Oct. 25.

Rick Klassen is being recognized for a 10 year Canadian Football League career that included a Grey Cup win in 1985.

Klassen was an outstanding athlete at Sardis secondary school in the late 1970s, and played collegiately at Simon Fraser University.

Klassen was an offensive lineman with the Clansmen, and for the first eight games of his CFL career.

Credit BC Lions coach Vic Rapp for switching Klassen to the defensive line, where he became a dominant force.

Klassen helped the Lions to the 1983 Grey Cup game, a crushing 18-17 defeat to the Toronto Argonauts at BC Place Stadium.

Two years later, the West division all-star led his team back to the big game.

At Olympic Stadium in Montreal, Klassen’s Lions downed the Hamilton Tiger-Cats 37-24.

After seven years in BC, Klassen was dealt to the Saskatchewan Roughriders in 1988. After just one season on the prairies, he returned to BC, playing two more years before retiring in 1990. During the team’s 50th anniversary celebrations in 2003, Klassen was named a member of the Lions All-Time Dream Team.

The 3-Field hockey team won the first ever Canadian Forces Hockey Championship in 1968.

Drawn from a small unit of 250-300 men, they rose up and shocked opponents who dared to underestimate them.

A mix of military men and civilian skaters, they won three zone games in dominant fashion to qualify for nationals.

But the upstarts traveled to Petawawa, ON as true underdogs.

The teams they faced were drawn from bases of 5000-7000 men. Plus, tournament rules prohibited civilians from playing, forcing 3-Field to make the trip without a couple key players and their usual coach, Orv Litchfield.

The civilians were replaced by military men, and 3-Field rolled on.

Overcoming adversity, they shocked CFB Bagotville (8-4), CFB Trenton (6-2) and finally CFB Rockcliffe (4-2).

Many members of that team have since passed away, but a handful will attend the October induction ceremony, including Carl Marsh.

“I think it’s great to go into a Hall of Fame 46 years later,” Marsh said. “To have our name come up among all of Chilliwack’s athletes and teams that have done such great things, somebody must have remembered us.”

The Chilliwack Sports Hall of Fame would love to hear from family members of men who played on that 3-Field national championship team.

Click online to chilliwacksportshalloffame.com/contact-us/

Get general CSHOF info at chilliwacksportshalloffame.com

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