He helped lead the club to the league championship in 1908, which gave the Marlboros the opportunity to face the Montreal Wanderers in a one game challenge for the Stanley Cup. While Toronto would lose the game 6-4, Ridpath was able to score a goal during the contest.
On this date in 1909, Ridpath had the best game of his career when he scored seven times in a 15-10 Toronto win over Brantford. Later that same season, Ridpath played with the Cobalt Silver Kings, who would be one of the founding members of the National Hockey Association the following season.
Ridpath did not return to Cobalt for the 1909-10 season, as he had signed with the Ottawa Senators, who were also members in the new NHA along with the Haileybury Comets, Renfrew Creamery Kings, Montreal Shamrocks, Montreal Wanderers and a brand new club, the Montreal Canadiens.
As the Senators were the holders of the Stanley Cup at the time Ridpath joined the club, they had to endure a pair of challenges for the cup while in the middle of their NHA regular season schedule. The first challenge was from Edmonton of the Alberta Amateur Hockey Association, who they turned back in Game 1 by a score of 8-4 with Ridpath contributing a goal. The second match two days later saw Ottawa rack up 13 goals to Edmonton's 7, with Ridpath netting three goals in the Senators successful defense.
The Senators lost control of the cup when they had to relinquish it to the NHA league champion Wanderers, but Ridpath finished second in league in scoring with 15 goals in 12 games behind only Senators teammate Marty Walsh.
Ottawa rebounded in 1910-11 by taking the NHA championship, thanks to a 13-3 record and scoring a league best 122 goals, which was 31 more than the next closest team - quite a margin in a 16 game season! Ridpath came in third in scoring for the Senators and fourth in the league with 22 goals in those 16 games.
Once more in control of the Stanley Cup as league champions, Ottawa fended off two challenges for the cup, first a 7-4 owner Galt, with Ridpath scoring twice, and a 13-4 drubbing of Port Arthur, during which Ridpath again contributed two goals in defense of the cup.
1910-11 Ottawa Senators with the diminutive Stanley Cup
Ridpath missed the entire 1911-12 season after suffering a fractured skull when hit by a car in downtown Toronto in November of 1911. He survived his life-threatening injuries and the Toronto Blueshirts wanted Ridpath to suit up for them, but his vision never sufficiently recovered enough for him to return to the ice. Benefit games were held in his honor to help him pay his medical bills in both Ottawa and Toronto due to his popularity.
While he played right wing, Ridpath designed a popular style of early shin pads for goalkeepers that were widely worn in the early days of professional hockey.
goalkeeper shin pads designed by Ridpath
Today's featured jersey is a 1908-09 Toronto Marlboros Bruce Ridpath jersey as worn the day he scored 7 goals in a single game.
The Toronto Marlborough Athletic Club was founded in 1903 and operated several clubs - minor, junior and senior teams. The junior club won seven Memorial Cups and sent over 180 played to the NHL as an affiliate of the Toronto Maple Leafs, including six Hall of Famers. The senior team competed for the Stanley Cup in 1904 and won the Allan Cup in 1950 as the senior champions of Canada.