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February 25, 1960 - Image 7

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1960-02-25

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- - I -

Pivers Gerlach, Webster Ready
For Clash with OSU Champions

WCHA Hockey Teams Highly Rated


While Michigan's swimmer's
have already met their toughest
competition this season, the Wol-
verine divers have yet to be chal-
Shue Breaks
NBA Mark
By The Associated Press
DETROIT - Gene Shue made
National Basketball Assn. history
ere last night in pacing the De-
troit Pistons to a 128-110 victory
over the Syracuse Nats in the sec-
and game of a doubleheader.
In the opener, a 20-foot hook
shot by Phil Jordon with three
seconds to-go enabled the Cincin-
natt Royals to nip the Western
ivis ion champion St. Louis
Hawks 124-122.
Shue pumped in 37 points to
koist his season total to 1,520.
This shattered the season's one-
season guard record of 1,504 made
y Boston's Bob Cousy in the
1954-55 season.
ston Celtics last night clinched
at least a tie for the National Bas-
ketball Assn. Eastern title and set
a league record for games won in
a single season with a 131-110
thrashing of the Minneapolis
TORONTO - The Toronto
ple Leafs, playing one of their
best games 'of the season, defeat-
ed the Montreal Canadiens 3-1 in
a penalty-filled National Hockey
ague game last night.
* * *
NEW YORK - Goalie Terry
wchuk returned to the line-up
t night and helped boost De-
troit into sole possession of third
place In the National Hockey
ague as the Red Wings battled
the New York Rangers to a 2-2

However, this situation will last
only until Saturday when the
Wolverines are set to travel to
Ohio State, traditionally the home
of the best divers in the United
Diving for Michigan and trying
to assert leadership in the diving
world for the Wolverines will be
Joe Gerlach and Bob Webster.
Great Performances
In the past two weeks, first
Webster and then Gerlach, have
put on electrifying exhibitions
with near flawless performances
in beating Michigan State and
Indiana divers.
Now, however the Michigan
duo, who Coach Gus Stager calls
the best in the country, will have
to prove themselves in the face of
their stiffest Conference opposi-
These foes will be Sam Hall, de-
fending three-meter outdoor AAU
champion, NCAA and Big Ten
one-meter champion and either
Tom Gompf or Lou Vitucci.
This OSU squad is not the best
the Buckeyes have had in the last
20 years, during which their dlivers
Liave amassed 28 NCAA, numerous
AAU and Olympic championships;
but it is still one of the best in
the nation.
Top Divers
Last year the Buckeye duo of
Hall and the now-graduated Ron
O'Brien helped Ohio State retain
its position at the top of the div-
ing world.
However, the Wolverines are
npw challenging the Ohio State
hegemony of 20 years and the
reason behind this threat, ironi-
cally, was the five-year presence
on the Michigan campus of one of
these Ohio champions, Bruce
Harlan. -
Harlan, Michigan's diving coach
from 1954 until his untimely death
in a diving accident last summer,
was perhaps the greatest of Ohio
State's many great divers.
Diving for the United States
Harlan walked off with two gold
medals in the 1948 Olympics and
later helped the Buckeyes win
three NCAA championships as he
won five individual titles.
Coming to Michigan, Harlan be-

gan the hard job of building a div-
ing machine similar to that of
Ohio State.
The present Michigan diving
team of Webster, Gerlach, Ernie
Meissner, Ron JAco and T' Fran-
cis, unquestionably the top in col-
legiate circles, is a reflection of
Harlan's work.
In fact, Michigan's divers may
be the key to upcoming Big Ten
and NCAA championships.
Diving Strength
Although having defeated Mich-
igan in dual meet competition, In-.
diana, according to their Coach
Jim Counsilman, will not be able
to overcome the diving points
Michigan will score in the Big
Ten and possibly the NCAA
Indiana is currently trying toj
solve their diving shortage and
has hired Billingsley, Harlan's
partner, to coach and recruit pro-
spective diving hopefuls.

Just how good is the brand of
hockey being played in the West-
ern Collegiate Hockey League,
Hockey fans all over the country
could easily be asking this ques-
tion after seeing how the various
traveling Olympic squads have
been treated by some of the WCHA
The American Olympic team,
supposedly made up of the best
players America has to offer, was
held to a split of two games with
Michigan Tech and fared even
worse against Denver. In two
games with the Pioneers, the U.S.
Olympians could salvage only a
tie and a loss.
In fact it was the Denver team
that managed to administer most
of the lumps to the world's hockey
representatives in their "warm-
ups" for the current Games at
Squaw Valley.
In five exhibition contests
against Olympic squads, Denver
emerged undefeated, posting a
record of three wins and two ties.
This included a tie against the
Russians, favored to win the
Olympic title. So just how good is
WCHA hockey, ,and how did it
get that way?
According to Al Renfrew, Michi-
gan hockey mentor, "the league is
the best it has ever been. There is
no question in my mind at all
about that."
And, for once, Renfrew finds
himself of the same opinion on a
point as Minnesota Coach John

Mariucci. Renfrew points out in
support of this statement that
Mariucci feels the present Gopher
squad to be the best he has ever
coached (and this includes two
NCAA finalist teams in the early
But despite this, the Minnesota
team is resting in sixth place in
a seven team league.
Renfrew quotes Mariucci as say-
Braves N ame
Fisher Coach

Ray Fisher,
baseball coach

former Michigan
and major league

COMEBACK AWAITED - Michigan Goalie Jim Coyle will at-
tempt to regain his fine early season form this weekend when the
Wolverines meet Minnesota in a two-game home series.

Wolverine Goalie Coyle Suffers Slump
After Fine Early Season Performances

pitcher, will be part of the coach-
ing corps when the Milwaukee
Braves open their minor league
training camp next month.
Fisher was the Wolverine head
coach for 38 years. He was forced
to retire two years ago at the age
of 70, because of a University reg-
It will be Fisher's first connec-
tion with big league baseball since
he was hurling for the Cincinnati
Reds in 1921. He also pitched with
the New York Highlanders.
"I'm looking forward to it," he
said. "I've always enjoyed work-
ing with youngsters. It might feel
sort of funny at first, but I figure
I can help them."
The camp will open at Way-
cross, Ga., on March 13.

ing, "The hockey played in the
WCHA this year is the best organ-
ized hockey being played outside
of the National Hockey League or
the American Association."
In agreement with this, Renfrew
says "There isn't an easy team in
the league this year. There just
aren't any pushovers any more."
High Quality
The reason Renfrew gives for
the high quality of play that has
become expected of the WCHA
members is the extensive recruit-
ing that has been done in recent
"Whn I first -coached, teams
such as Michigan State, Michigan
Tech and North Dakota did no
recruiting at all. Players came to
school on their own.
"Today, everyone is getting good
talent. Some of the finest Cana-
dian amateurs are coming to
school in the States," says the
Michigan coach.
But whatever the reason, the
fact remains that WCHA hockey
is tough and this is recognized
by coaches all over the country.
Former Michigan hockeycoach
Vic I-eyliger, now coaching the Air
Force Academy team, quotes Jack
Riley, Olympic Coach and coach of
West Point's puck squad as say-
ing that he "will never bring the
Army team out West to play
the boys will be just cannon fodder
against (the Western teams)."
The spectre of a league getting
too tough doesn't worry Renfrew
"It's good for hockey."

A prime question - what has
happened to Jimmy Coyle?
The wiry goalie opened the cam-
paign with two shutouts, equal-
ing the Wolverine record for shut-
outs in a season, held by Willard
Ikola (1952-3-4). The team shot
to a 5-2 league and 10-4 overall
won-lost record. Coyle was cruis-
ing along at 2.2 goals allowed per
game, exceptional for the wide
open college game.
Then the roof fell in with four
losses in five games, two to Michi-
gan Tech and one each to Minne-
sota and Michigan State. The
Wolverine slate dipped to 6-6 for.
league play. Coyle reached a per-
sonal low against Michigan Tech,
allowing fifteen goals in two
games. His average soared to 3.7
goals allowed per game.
Playoff Hopes
Michigan's hopes of making the
Western Hockey Collegiate Asso-
ciation playoffs rest largely on the
return of Coyle to his early season
form. Currently the Wolverines
!are in fourth place with a 6-6
league record. The first four teams
are eligible for a playoff berth.
Coyle, under the watchful eye
of Coach Al Renfrew, is trying to
correct some of his bad habits of
the last few games. Renfrew is
certain that Coyle will come back.
"Jim was hurt by the long exam
and semester breaks and took
quite a beating at Minnesota and
Michigan Tech," said Renfrew.
"Then he tried to compensate

for his mistakes, mostly due to his
layoff, by making new moves.
"Now he is trying to eliminate
these bad moves and regain his
reactions in practice, especially in
stopping angle shots, which gave
him trouble. It's a matter of time.
"We are certain that Jim will
start playing as he did early in
the year."
Coyle feels almost the same as
Renfrew. "It was a situation where
I let myself get into some bad
habits. If someone scored to my
left, I would over-compensate on
the next shot and leave the right'
side wide open. Then if they scored
on the right, I would keep half
an eye to each side. When I lost
confidence, I was an easier target."
"Actually, the whole team went
into a slump at the same time I
did. When they were scoring twoj
goals on me, we were getting
seven. Now, when they get seven
on mre, we get two. I think winning
the last game against Michigan
State put us back on the right
Coyle is small as goalies come.

The present trend is towards tall-
er, huskier men, under the as-
sumption that they cover morel
of the open area of the net and
are more durable physically over
the course of a testing season.
He more than makes up for this
deficiency, if it can be called that,
with, as Coach Renfrew says,
"quick, good actions and guts."
Coyle was born and raised
around Tilsenburg, Ontario, which
is close to Simcoe, home of Red
Kelly. How did he start playing
goalie? "At around five. I began
playing with my brother's friends
on Saturday and after church on
Sundays and they were mostly
older than I was. I also couldn't
skate so well so they stuck me in
goal to get me out of the way.
There I stayed"
Just a Junior
Only 19, Coyle is a junior in the
education school and is a science
major. After graduation, he hopes.
to teach high school science, and
is thinking of moving out to Cali-
Coyle and Michigan will have'
to be at their best in the next
week as they take on both Denver
and Minnesota in two game series.
Denver is leading the league.
Michigan is currently in fourth
place and must stay there to merit
a playoff spot.


Has Been
Al the latest
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