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October 30, 1944 - Image 21

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1944-10-30

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OCT. 2O, 1944

THEMICHIGAN DAILY

Wrestlers Are Undefeated
Hugh Wilson Curtis Win Quintet Finishes
Big Ten Championships Stormy Season
In Sixth Place
Purdue Gives Tough Opposition and Michigan
Was Pushed Hard To Score One Point Triumph Oosterbaan's Charges

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By HANK MANTHO
Daily Sports Editor
It was recently announced that
Freshman Coach Wally Webber
would handle the reigns of this years'
wrestling squad, and he will take the
place of Ray Courtright, who brought
in a Big Ten winner last year.
Coach Webber is faced with the
task of rebuilding an entire new team
as mostof the members of last year's
squad are off the campus and he
may not even have a single letter-
man report for duty when the fall
workouts begin. A hasty review of
last year's championship team, which
finished the season without a single
loss will show the problem which
faces Coach Webber now.
With Hugh Wilson and George Cur-
tis copping the only individual first
places, the highly favored Wolverine
wrestling team climaxed an unde-
feated season by taking their first
title 'in six years, 28-27, as they met
surprise resistance from Purdue in
Patten Gymnasium at Evanston, Feb.
1J.
_,The Wolverines started out in fine
fashion in the preliminaries of the
Big Ten finals, as they qualified every
man on the squad for the semi-final
events, also garnering five points for'
their team total as Lowell Oberly,
Jim Galles, John Greene, George
Curtis and John King each registered
falls.
Only Four Reach Finals
However, Oberly, Curtis, Wilson
and Greene were the only Wolverine
representatives to win their semi-
final matches which entitled them to
go on into the finals in an effort to
pick up valuable points for their
squad.
At the start of the season Coach
Ray Courtright had only lettermen
Johnny Greene, heavyweight, and
Bob Allen, 165-pounder, with which
to rebuild a team. But before the
season had got underway Jim Galles,
former 175 pound Wolverine Confer-
ence champion, joined the ranks.
And with the rapid improvement of
Lowell Oberly, Wisconsin transfer,
two untried sophomores, George Cur-
tis and Hugh Wilson, and reserve
lettermen Chip Warrick, Coach
Courtright's squad gradually took
shape and was being hailed as one
of the strongest teams produced at
Michigan in recent years.
Buckeyes Beaten
Michigan's untried crew had thefr
initial test against Ohio State, and
the squad lived up to all advance ex-
pectations as they romped over the
Buckeyes, 24-8.
Bob Reichert started the Wolver-
ines off on' the right track in this
meet, as he won a decision over Rog
Cantarelli of Ohio in the 121 pound
bracket, but Dick Ewart of the Buck-
eyes put his team ahead with a fall
over Dick Freeman, Michigan 128-
pounder.
Oberly Decisions Payne
Oberly again put Michigan in the
lead with a decision over Bill Payne
of Ohio, but this was short lived as
Nick Demora kept the Bucks in the
thick of the battle with a decision
over Warrick at 145 pounds.
However, this threat by the Buck-
eyes was quelled as the Maize and
Blue scored three successive falls over
the amazed Ohioans. George Curtis,
Michigan's 155-pounder, started this
barrage of falls when he pinned Cap-
tain Joe Stora of Ohio State. Hugh
Wilson at 165 pounds and Jim Galles
at 175 pounds registered the other
two falls to cinch the victory.
Greene Adds Three Points
Johnny Greene finished this suc-
cessful invasion of Ohio State with
a clear-cut decision over Stan Gerace
of the Bucks in the heavyweight di-
vision, adding three more points to
the steam roller total amassed by
Michigan.
Michigan and Purdue who were
rated as the top teams in the Con-'

ference before the start of the season,
and as these two Goliaths of the
Midwest clashed, it could easily have
been a preview of the Big Ten finals.
Wolverines Beat Purdue
Both teams entered this meet un-
defeated and boasted plenty of pow-
er, but the Wolverines managed to
keep their slate untarnished as they
toppled the Boilermakers from the
rank of the unbeaten, 17-9, in a hotly
contested fray.
Reichert got Michigan off on the
right track as he scored a 6-2 deci-
sion over Dave Liang at 121 pounds.
Bob Gittins, Wolverine 128-pounder,
increased the score as he registered
an impressive 6-1 decision over Casey
Stengal in his first appearance for
the Maize and Blue.
Oberly Defeated
In the feature match of the day,
Oberly wrestled his lifellong pal,
Dannie Nettesheim, at 136 pounds
and he lost a close 1-0 decision,
which was not decided until the final
period. Both men, entered the tilt
undefeated and Nettesheim's victory
gave the Boilermakers their first
score of the afternoon.
Chip Warrick then put the Maize
and Blue into the win column again
by gaining the nod over Bob Arm-

Are OnlyiMicigan
Squad To Miss Crown
By JERRY LEWIS
1943-44 was just another year as
far as Michigan basketball was con-
cerned as Coach Bennie Oosterbaan's
charges finished the season with an
over-all record of eight wins and
nine losses and a Western Confer-
ence total of five victories in 12
starts, good for sixth place in the
standings.
Thus, the cagers became the only
winter sports aggregation which fail-
ed to bring home a Big Ten title and
became the only team during the '43-
44 season to fail in Conference play.
Michigan Gets Off to Bad Start
Michigan opened the campaign
with the brightest prospects in years
as a Navy-laden squad was estab-
lished as one of the Big Ten favorites
in pre-season dope. However, the
Wolverines got off to a bad start and
by the time they straightened out,
any chance for a championship was
lost.
The hopes of the Maize and Blue
fans for a winning team after several
years of wandering around in the
waste lands of defeat were buoyed
considerably as Oosterbaan's squad
defeated its first two opponents, Cen-
tral Michigan and Romulus Air Base,
by overwhelming scores.
The third contest of the season
provided a few more thrills as a
fighting Fort = Custer quintet gave
Michigan a fright before succumbing,
46-44. With a perfect record of three
wins in as many outings, the Wolver-
ines went confidently into a two-
game series with a powerful Western
Michigan quintet and were humbled
in both tilts, 48-38 and 57-50.
The second game of this series
brought out the fighting qualities
which distinguished the Maize and
Blue five all season as it came from
behind in the final seconds to knot
the count and force the game into
overtime. It also saw the birth of
diminutive Tommy King as Michi-
gan's leading scorer as he pumped in
13 points.
Wildcats Beat Michigan 57-47
The Western Conference opener
saw a highly-touted Northwestern
five invade Ann Arbor and leave with
a 57-47 victory despite a remarkable
24-point splurge by King in one of
the finest individual performances
ever seen on a Michigan court. Elroy
Hirsch played his first game as regu-
lar center in this tilt and brought
much acclaim for his aggressive
backboard tactics.
The following night the Wolver-
ines played host to Illinois, Confer-
ence champs of the previous season,
and humbled the "Gee Whiz Kids"
52-45 for an upset in a see-saw
battle. King continued to set the
pace with 16 markers.
Following the even break in the
opening week-end of Big Ten play,
Michigan trekked to Wisconsin for a
two-game series and proceeded to
drop both contests, 50-41 and 52-31.
The next week-end the Wolverines
entrained for Purdue and another
two-game duel. The first contest
went into overtime before the B'oiler-
makers eked out a 46-44 triumph.
Strack hung up 19 points in this
affair. In the second tilt Purdue fin-
ally found its vaunted power to coast
to an easy 51-35 win.
Michigancame home for its next
two contests; meeting Ohio State.
King racked up 27 points as the
Buckeyes won the first 53-49, and
was effectively stopped in the second
which Ohio State took 51-37.
Wolverines Win Two from Indiana
Against Indiana the following
week-end, the Maize and Blue finally
got back on the victory trail with a
double victory over the Hoosiers, tak-
ing the first game in a walk, 65-49,
with Hirsch getting 22 tallies, and
squeezing through to a 46-44 win in
the second.
The hapless Chicago Maroons were

the Michigan victims in the next
game as the Wolverines poured on a
71-34 drubbing. Oosterbaan's char-
ges closed the season with a surprise
50-45 upset of Northwestern to
avenge the earlier trouncing by the
Wildcats.
King Sixth in Scoring
King finished in sixth place in
Conference scoring and was elected
the most valuable player on the
squad. Strack was tenth in the Big
Ten and was named honorary cap-
tain. He also was named by the
Detroit Free Press as the outstanding
basketball player in the state. Hirsch
wound up 13th in scoring.
In an effort to bolster this some-
what weak record and pull the cage
squad up on a level with the other
championship teams summer basket-
ball drills were instituted by Assis-
tant Coach Bill Barclay this spring.
Such drills are the first in the history
of the University.

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JOHNNY GREENE
strong in the 145 pound bracket. But
the Purdue matmen were not giving
up that easily and they came back
strong, winning the next two match-
es on decisions to knot the count at
nine all. Newt Copple, Purdue 155-
pounder, won a hair raising decision
from Curtis of Michigan, while Jack
Shepard defeated Wilson in the 165
pound division.
Boilermaker Spurt Throttled
This sudden spurt by the Boiler-
makers was throttled when Galles,
Wolverine 175-pounder, registered
the only fall of the day over Bruce
Porter and with the three points
added to the Michigan total by act-
ing captain Green's win over Bob
Wilson in a heavyweight encounter,
the Wolverines ended their success-
ful home debut.
As Michigan approached the half-
way mark in the season with their
two toughest teams out of the way,
the title-bound Wolverines put their
untarnished slate on the block two
more times, against Minnesota and
Indiana.
Gophers Beaten Easily
The Maize and Blue matmen had
little trouble subduing the under-
manned Gopher squad, 25-3, as they
registered two falls and five decisions
and only lost one match to the hap-
less men from Minneapolis.

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WAY BACK WHEN:
Michigan Played, Won First
Gridiron Contest Back in 1871

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When the Michigan gridders trot
out on the field Sept. 16 against Iowa
Pre-Flight, it will mark the opening
of the 65th Wolverine football sea-
son.
May 30, 1879 marked the first
football game ev.er played by a Mich-
igan team, and that obscure outfit
inaugurated a tradition of winning
football which has been upheld ever
since. On that day the Wolverine
representatives defeated Racine Col-
lege, 7-2, under the guidance of a
student coach.4

son. In 1883, they tried again, but
ledged powers of the football world,
on ,the schedule. This first venture
into the big time was hardly a -suc-
cess as the Wolverines dropped all
three of their games, losing to Har-
vard, Yale and Princeton.
This unhappy experience must
have given the Michigan supporters
were little more successful, winning
but one tilt and losing three.
Evidently, Michigan gave up on
the eastern schools for awhile after-
ward, confining its gridiron activities
to local teams for the next several

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