Rick Uhrich (back row, far right) was a key player on the Memorial Cup-winning Regina Pats in 1974.
Born: June 3, 1954 (Regina, Saskatchewan)
Died: September 4, 2014 (Etobicoke, Ontario)
Rick Uhrich was a top scorer with the Regina Pats and a key member of the celebrated 1974 Memorial Cup-winning team.
Uhrich, a 5-foot-9, 170-pound forward, joined the Pats at age 16 for the 1970-71 season. He scored four goals and five assists in 40 games in his first season.
His production increased as he scored 13, 28 and 35 goals in subsequent seasons. In 1973-74, his final campaign with the junior team, he added 52 assists for 87 points, making him the fourth highest scorer on the team. He played on a line centred by Dennis Sobchuk with burly Clark Gillies on one wing. (Gillies would go on to a long NHL career, including four Stanley Cup wins with the New York Islanders.) The Pats were coached by Bob Turner, a defenceman who won five consecutive Stanley Cups with the Montreal Canadiens.
Uhrich added eight goals and four assists in 16 playoff games before scoring key goals in the Memorial Cup tournament. He had three goals in three games, as the Pats claimed the trophy with a 7-4 victory over the Quebec Remparts at the Stampede Corral in Calgary.
The victory ended a 44-year Memorial Cup drought for the Pats, who have now gone 40 years without a Cup.
Uhrich was selected in the 10th round (No. 166 overall) of the NHL draft by the Pittsburgh Penguins. Two days later, the Winnipeg Jets took him in the fifth round (No. 66 overall) of the World Hockey Association draft.
Uhrich signed with the Penguins and played a single season with its International Hockey League farm team in 1974-75. In 76 games, Uhrich scored 21 goals with 48 assists for the Fort Wayne Komets.
He left hockey after a single season as a professional. He became a computer programmer with MSL Limited, a technology company in his home province. In 1992, after moving to Toronto, he founded Information Systems Architects Inc. (ISA), which today is one of the largest information technology security providers in Canada.