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September 15, 1954 - Image 36

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1954-09-15

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Michigan Tennis Team Has Successful Season

M Gymnastics Season Marred
By'; Injuries and Ineligibility


A few days before May vanished
I small group of hopeful Michi-
:an athletes journeyed to Cham-
aign, Illinois, in the hopes of
ringing back a title-a title that
iad eluded Wolverine tennis teams
ince 1945.
They were the underdogs, they
:new it, and it made them more
letermined. And while they talked
if the final exams they were miss-
ng and would have to make up
when they got back to Ann Ar-
or, they harbored thoughts of
ppping a crown, a crown That
rould oring a little light to a
omparatively shoddy year for
ichigan athletic teams.
The experts gave them a good
hance to dethrone Tndiana. Wol-
erine enthusiasts and tennis an-
lysts, alike, pointed to the fa';t
hat Michigan had held the Hoos-
ers even before the rains came
nd washed out their match dur-
tg the regular season.
But Coach Dale Lewis and his
ndiana netters were not to be
lenied their second successive
Vsetern Conference champion-
hip. Never in any trouble, and al-

ways holding the dominant posi-
tion, the Hoosiers were in control
from the opening match. Michigan
performed admirably, finishing
second, five points ahead of the
third-place Michigan State outfit.
The 1954 edition was one of the
most successful tennis teams in
recent years. It bettered the third
place finish of the '53 squad, and
equalled the position of the run-
ner up team of 1951. The dual meet
record of Bill Murphy's crew was
a splendid 11 wins, three defeats,
and one tie.
Early Indications
An early indication that Michi-
gan would have a good year was
given in April, during the Easter
vacation, when the netters went
on their annual southern tour. The
Wolverines captured three of four
matches; the only loss being a 9-0
lacing at the hands of Tulane, one
of the best if not the top collegiate
outfit in the nation.
The Maize and Blue swept by
Alabama, 8-1, with Al Mann, in
the number one singles position,
sub-par physically due to illness,
suffering the only loss. The Wol-
verints blanked Spring Hill, 9-0,
and topped Loyola, 5-3.
The training record is exception-
al when it is remembered that the
net men'were playing outdoors for
the first time. All practice sessions
up to the tour had been held on
the wooden floor of the Intramur-
al Building, and there is a consid-
erable difference between the way
a ball bounces on wood and grass
or clay.
Rain Interferes
Late in April, after two weeks of
intensive practice in which Coach
Murphy worked his squad hard to
get them in shape to meet the con-

ference champions, Michigan bat-
tled Indiana to a 2-2 tie in a
match that was curtailed by a
heavy shower.
A good-sized crowd was happily
surprised to see the Wolverines
hold the Hoosiers even. In fact,
the-home team was slightly ahead
when the rains came. Bob Mitchell
was ahead of Indiana's Dick Ben-
nent in the number five singles,
2-0, and Bob Sassone led 1-0, in
the sixth singles slot.
Michigan's two victories were
both upsets. The greatest surprise
was Bob Paley's win over John
Hironimus, 1953 conference champ
in the number two slot and holder
of 28 wins in 34 outings over the
previous two years. Paley took
charge early in the match and
won easily, 6-2, 6-3.
The other victory was supplied
by Pete Paulus who stopped Duane
Gomer, 7-5, 6-3. With the contest
all even at five games apiece in
the first set, Paulus broke through
Gomer's service and then held his
own to win the set. With the score
tied at 3-3, Paulus ran out the last
three games in the second set to
capture the match.
Successful Road Trip
Michigan went on a two game
road trip and chalked up a pair of
victories. The netters whipped
Notre Dame, 6-3, and trampled
Northwestern, 7-2. The two soph-
omores on the Maize and Blue
squad were particularly impressive.
At South Bend, Mitchell blasted
Don Kennedy, 6-3, 6-1, and Sas-
sone outfought John Stuldreher to
win, 7-5, 6-3. In doubles, the duo
combined to win, 7-5, 6-3.
Against Northwestern, the new-
combers had a field day. In sin-
gles Sassone won, 6-1, 6-1, and

Mitchell was victronous by the
score of 6-2, 6-0. They combined
to annihilate their foes in the
number three doubles position,
6-0, 6-0.
Michigan, however, was not to
remain long on its silver cloud.
The netters were handed two
straight defeats, by Western Mich-
igan and Michigan State. Then the
Wolverines came back and went
undefeated for the rest of the sea-
son, capturing six matches.
Against Big Ten teams, the Maize
and Blue had six victories and one
tie in eight matches.
Michigan State Series
The highlight of the season, as
it is with almost any Michigan
team, were the two matches with
the Spartans. The first setto went
to Michigan State, 8-1, and the
second to the Wolverines by a
count of 6-3. The scores, however,
do not show how close and how
hard fought the series was.
Of the nine matches in the con-
test played at East Lansing, six
went the full distance of three sets.
Two of the matches, however,
which did not go the full distance,
were extremely close. In the num-
ber one singles encounter, Jim
Pore topped Michigan's captain,
Al Mann, 7-5, 8-6. Inability to hold
his own serve cost, Mann the
match. This was particularly ob-
vious in the second set when Pore
came from a 5-2 deficit to win
the match.
The number one doubles match
was almost as close and just as
bitterly fought. Steve Britton and
Dana Squire combined to stop
Michigan's Paulus and Paley, 10-8,
(Continued on Page 5)
.f.e." .. ....

Injuries and eligibility problems
wreaked havoc with Michigan's
1954 gymnastics squad, changing
the team from a potential title
threat into a fortunate third-place
finisher in the Big Ten meet.
The Wolverines had high hopes
as the season opened, but were
plagued from the start by bad
breaks. Harry Luchs, the 1952 con-
ference parallel bars champion,
sprained his thumb the day before
the season opener and was side-
lined for .several days.
With the injury gone, Luchs was
just rounding into form again when
he was declared ineligible for the
remainder of the season due to
scholastic difficulties. With their
chances for a conference title low-
ered by this turn of events, the
Michigan men had their hopes
shattered by a wrist injury to cap-
tain Mary Johnson, the top Wol-
verine performer throughout the
Sixth-place finishers in 1953,
Coach Newt Loken's charges were
determined to improve on t h a t
mark last season. A team depth
such as Michigan hadn't had in
several years gave promise of mak-
ing the team a dangerous threat to
Illinois' hopes of retaining its con-
ference title.
, While Loken's men did improve
on their performances of the pre-
vious year, the team never quite
gained the heights expected at the
start of the season. Somewhat er-
ratic performances coupled with an
amazing string of bad breaks cost
Michigan its best season inyears
and a possible conference crown.
Even without Luchs, Michigan
had no trouble winning its season
opener against Notre Dame. Lee
Krumbholz, Johnson, and Bill Wink-
ler, the 1955 captain-elect, led the
way as the Wolverines downed the
Irish, 55-41. Michigan captured five
firsts, with Krumbholz scoring on
the high bar, Johnson on the paral-
lel bars, and Winkler on the Tram-
Between Semesters Break
The Maize and Blue fortunes
tumbled during the two weeks in-
terlude between semesters, as the

... gymnastics coach

Michigan men were able to salvage
only one win in three meets. The
Wolverine gymnasts opened the va-
cation action by trouncing Wiscon-
sin, 64-32. Johnson put on one of
the best performances of his ca-
reer capturing every event in
which he was entered. Thp versa-
tile captain copped the high bar,
parallel bars, flying rings, and
New Routine Unveiled
Johnson unveiled a new routiine
against the Badgers, a double-fly-
away off the flying rings. He was
the only collegiate gymnast in the
nation to perform the routine.
Winkler, also adding to his reper-
toire, captured the trampoline win
to give Michigan five victories in
the six events.
The boom was lowered at Illi-
nois, where the Wolverines, several
of whom were ill at the time, put
on a performance described by
Loken as being "miserable" to ab-
sorb a 55-41 defeat at the hands of
the Illini. The loss was the first
of the season for the Wolverines.
Iowa handed Michigan another
defeat, this time by a narrow 481-
47% score. The Michigan loss was

a surprise, since the Hawkeyes had
not been regarded very highly in
pre-season forecasts.
The new semester ,found several
changes in the Michigan lineup.
Luchs and trampoliner Ron Fox
were declared ineligible, but their
loss was balanced somewhat by the
eligibility of Frank Adams, a star
the previous year, and Tony San
Antonio, a first semester sopho-
Tumblers Tumble Gophers
Sparked by the double victories
of Adams and Johnson, the Wol-
verines returned to their winning
ways by trouncing Minnesota, 65 -
39%. Adams garnered laurels in
the trampoline and tumbling in his
first taste at competition of t he
season, while Johnson captured
honors in the parallel bars and
flying rings.
Erratic Lee Krumbholz gave one
of his best performances of the
season to capture the side horse
as the Wolverines won five of
six events. Krumbholz garnered 17
points diuring the meet, for one of
the top Wolverine performances of
the year.
Michigan blasted Ohio State,
64-32, as Johnson once again gave
a tremedous performance. The sen-
sational captain finished on top on
the high bar, parallel bars, and
flying rings, to pace the Maize-
and Blue to its. fourth win. Netting
also a fourth and a tie for second,
Johnson wound up the meet with
22 points. Krumbholz added 18
points, including another sparkling
performance on the side horse, to
the Michigan total.
The worst blow of the season,
Johnson's injury, hit the Wolver-
ines just before their meet with
Northwestern, but the weak Wild-
cats were still no match for Loken's
crew. With Johnson sidelined, the
Michigan men eased out a 641-
302 win, with Krumbholz taking
up the slack with four firsts and
a third to pace the contestants.
The injury to the captain turned
out to be more serious than was
at first expected. It was hoped
that Johnson would be ready to
perform against Michigan State,

but his wrist refuseO. to heal, with
the result that he was of only
limited help the rest df the season.
In the final home meet of the
season the Wolverines captured
their fourth straight win by beat-
ing Michigan State, 56-40. Krumb-
holz and the unpredictable Adams
sparked the win.
Adams captured the trampoline
and tumbling, while Krumbholz
pulled the surprise of the meet,
topping Spartan star Carlton Rintz
on the high bar.
Michigan's seventh win of the
season came at the expense of
Indiana, 62-34. The Wolverines won
every event in swamping th e
Hoosiers, with Krumbholz d again
leading the way. Once a g a i n
Krumbholz pulled a sparkling up-
set on the high bar, this time edg-
ing Hoosier star Ron Feigl, one of
the best in the country.
Loken's men entered the Big Ten
meet as the chief threat to Illinois'
chances for a fifth straight title,
but the last minute loss of Johnson
was an unexpected blow. It was
hoped that Johnson would be back
in top form for the conference en-
counter, but the injury was aggra-
vated before the meet and proved
to be a disastrous blow to the
Third Place Finish
The loss of Johnson plus some
poor performances by other Mich-
igan men dropped the Wolverines
into third place, behind Illinois and
Minnesota. Loken's charges fin-
ished a narrow half point ahead
of Michigan State, which was
Krumbholz, a disappointment
during the preliminaries, was the
main Wolverine point-producer in.
the finals, garnering a second on
the high bar and additional points
on the parallel bars and flying
rings. The slender senior failed to
reach the finals in the side horse, a
big blow to Michigan's second-
place aspirations.
Flying rings specialist Dick Berg-
man and Adams also had off days
and failed to add expected points
to the Michigan total.
(Continued on Page 7)

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