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Sports News and Highlights
Commonwealth Games

Marchers carrying a giant Canadian flag participate in the official opening of the XI Commonwealth Games, which were held in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, August 3-12.

Commonwealth Games


On October 17 the New York Yankees defeated the Los Angeles Dodgers 7-2 to win the sixth and deciding game of the World Series. The victory marked the first time in history that any team won the World Series in four straight games after losing the first two.

[All Baseball News and Highlights]


John Havelick retired as a player on April 9, after having played in a record 1,270 regular-season games, all of them as a Boston Celtic. In his final season he played in his 13th consecutive All-Star Game. His career statistics included a record 23,930 field goal attempts and 10,513 field goals (second in this category).

On June 7, the Washington Bullets defeated the Seattle SuperSonics 105-99 to win the 1977-78 NBA Championship.

[All Basketball News and Highlights]

Ray Ceulemans Billiards

Ray Ceulemans of Belgium won his 15th title at the 33rd world amateur Three-Cushion Billiards Championship, held in Las Vegas, Nevada, in May.

Erich Scharer and Josef Benz Bobsledding

Horst Schonau steered the East German 4-man bobsled to victory at the 45th World Championships, held at Lake Placid, New York, February 4-12. (Left) Erich Scharer teamed with brakeman Josef Nenz to win the 2-man bobsled title with a time of 1:05.12.


On September 15, Muhammad Ali became World Heavyweight Boxing Champion for the third time by defeating Leon Spinks in 15 rounds.

[All Boxing News and Highlights]

Mark Roth Bowling

Left: Mark Roth finished fourth in the Firestone Tournament of Champions and set a record for earnings in 1978 (over $118,000) despite persistent sore thumb problems.

Right: Cook County Vending Co. of Chicago, Illinois, won the Women's International Bowling Congress tournament in Miami, Florida. The winning team was (left to right) Sandy Lutz, Kathy Klopp, Sheila Clegg (captain), Dee Sipos, and Joan Karge.

Cook County Vending Co. bowlers

M. G. Burgess, captain of New Zealand's cricket team, defends the wicket with a hook stroke during the first test match against England at the Oval, London.

cricket match

The 20th World Curling Championship, held in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, March 27 to April, was won by a rink from Superior, Wisconsin, comprising Bob Nichols, Bill Strum, Tom Locken, and Bob Christman. They beat Kristian Soerum's rink from Norway 6-4 in the final.

World Curling Championship
Albert Zweifel Cycling

Left: A mud-spattered Albert Zweifel carries his bicycle after winning his third professional world cycling title in Spain.

Right: Cyclists get up to speed in the early going of the Tour de France. Bernard Hinault (right) was the eventual winner.

Bernard Hinault
Greg Louganis Diving

Greg Louganis (left) won the ten-meter platform diving gold medal in the world swimming championships in West Berlin, Germany, in August; Falk Hoffman won the silver, Vladimir Alenik the bronze.


Nancy Lopez set a new record by winning five consecutive matches on the LPGA circuit.

Gary Player came from seven strokes behind to win the Masters.

[All Golf News and Highlights]


The Soviet Union dominated the world gymnastics championships at Strasbourg, France, in October. Although its gymnasts placed second behind Japan for the men's team title, they took the women's team title, captured the gold and bronze in the men's combined competition, and swept the women's combined medals. The United States won its first gold medals in major international competition since the 1932 Olympic Games; Kurt Thomas won the men's floor exercise, and Marcia Frederickwon the uneven parallel bars.

Kurt Thomas executes a high somersault during his gold medal-winning floor exercise routine.

Kurt Thomas

Fred Lewis demonstrates the form that earned him his fifth U.S. National Open Handball Championship in Tucson, Arizona. He earned the title by defeating defending champion Naty Alvarado, 21-17, 21-6.

Fred Lewis

Horse Racing

Affirmed, owned by Florida breeder Louis Wolfson, won the Triple Crown and was named best three-year-old colt and Horse of the Year.

[All Horse Racing News and Highlights]

Ice Hockey

The Canadiens defeated the Boston Bruins four games to two in the final series of the playoffs (May 13-25) to win their third straight Stanley Cup.

[All Hockey News and Highlights]

Irini Rodnina and Aleksandr Zaitsev Ice Skating

The World Figure and Dance Championships were held in Ottawa, Canada, March 7-11. Soviet skaters Irina Rodnina and Aleksandr Zaitsev (left) won their sixth consecutive pairs title, making them the only skaters to successfully defend their titles. Anett P÷tzsch became the third East German to capture the women's title. The ice dancing title was claimed by Soviet skaters Gennadi Karponosov and Natalia Linichuk.

Trakia Club Rowing

At the Henley Royal Regatta in England in July, the Trakia Club from Bulgaria won three events in its first ever visit. The Bulgarian won the Grand Challenge Cup (eights) by three-quarters of a length over the University of Washington (left), the Stewards' Cup (coxless fours), and the Prince Philip Cup (coxed fours).

John Fidlergraphics Rugby

John Fidler of Gloucester, who stands 6 feet 4 inches, towers over 5-foot 6-inch Stephen Kenney of Leicester in the John Player Rugby Union Cup final game at Twickenham, on April 15, which was won by Gloucester 6-3.


The sloop "Circus Maximus," co-skippered by John Raby and Don Ritter, was the first across the line in the Newport-to-Bermuda yacht race in June.

Circus Maximus
Hanni Wenzel Skiing

Hanni Wenzel (left) became the first skier from Liechtenstein ever to win the women's World Cup. Ingemar Stenmark, of Sweden, won the men's World Cup for a third successive time, again without even attempting a downhill race.


Argentina defeated The Netherlands 3-1 in overtime to capture its first World Cup championship, on June 25, at River Plate Stadium in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

The scoreboard at River Plate Stadium proclaims victory for Argentina while Argentine fans go wild.

Argentina declares victory

Stella Taylor, a 46-year-old marathon swimmer, embarked on a swim of over 100 miles from Orange Cay in The Bahamas to Florida in October. Rough seas and jellyfish stings forced her to abandon her efforts about 20 miles from Miami, Florida.

Stella Taylor
Table Tennis

Wilfried Lieck and Wiebke Hendriksen of West Germany teamed up to win the European mixed doubles championship during the March tournament in Duisburg, West Germany.

Wilfried Lieck and Wiebke Hendriksen

Track and Field

No less than 14 new men's world outdoor records were achieved in 1978, 8 of them in Olympic events. Women set 11 new world outdoor records, 8 of them in Olympic events.

[All Track and Field News and Highlights]


John Peterson is thrown by Mark Liberman in a match at the National AAU Freestyle Wrestling Championships in Ames, Iowa, in March. Peterson eventually won the match.

John Peterson and Mark Lieberman

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The Robinson Library >> In The Year... >> 1978

This page was last updated on December 24, 2017.