Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 2, Number 1, January, 1992 Page: 8
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Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal
On July 27, they avenged their earlier defeat by the Columbus Cardinals and
then some, overwhelming them, 27-8, before a delighted crowd at Veterans Park. They
posted an important victory over the respected Baytown Humble Oilers, 9-7, before
splitting a doubleheader with Conroe in Houston on the first day of August. The Truckers
had added pitchers Joe Zuber and Charles Tankersley for the Conroe games. Zuber lost
the first to Gorin, 8-0, but Tankersley, with relief help from Jiggs Kana, won the second,
Back in Weimar the next week, they beat Sweeny and Ehrler, 6-5, and out-
slugged Angelo's Cafe of Houston, 12-11. They then split their final four scheduled
games, losing one to Conroe, 9-6, and winning their final one, on August 18, 8-0 over
the South Central Texas League All Stars. At the final game, the Truckers and their fans
paid tribute to former New York Yankee slugger Babe Ruth, who had died two days
The Truckers, who had posted a winning percentage of .718 with 28 wins
and 11 losses, and proven themselves to be one of the best semipro teams in central
Texas, accepted a berth in the Houston Post Tournament at Buff Stadium in Houston.
They proceeded to surprise everybody by winning their first five games. Kana and Wall
each pitched shutouts to open the tournament. In the third game, on September 2, they
were matched with Sweeny. Both teams were unbeaten and in fact, unscored upon, but
the Truckers emerged with a 6-2 win. Two days later, Wall beat Conroe and pitcher Jack
Venable, who was coming off a no-hitter, by the same score. The Truckers then pounded
out a 14-12 victory over the Shell Oilers to gain a berth in the tournament finals.
Conroe, meanwhile, fought through the loser's bracket to seize the other slot
in the finals. Needing two straight victories to eliminate the Truckers and win the
tournament, the Wildcats got them, 9-3 and 4-3. Still, the Truckers won $1525 for
finishing second and Allen Winters, Jiggs Kana, Murray Wall, Frank Kana, Al Joe Hunt,
and George Billeck were among twenty-one players named to the All Tournament
1949: The Peak of Their Glory
The Truckers opened their greatest season with a game against their arch
rival, the Conroe Wildcats, on June 1, 1949 at Veterans Park in Weimar. Reportedly,
3000 people were on hand to watch Jiggs Kana pitch eight strong innings and go four
for four at the plate to lead the Truckers to a 6-3 victory. Murray Wall, who pitched the
ninth, ended the game by striking out Charlie Gorin with the bases loaded.
The two teams had once again competed to sign the best players from the
University of Texas, but this year Weimar had gotten the upper hand. While Conroe again
signed Gorin and added catcher Dan Watson, powerful first baseman Tom Hamilton, and
future standout Kal Segrist, the Truckers picked up versatile Frank "Pancho" Womack,
two All Southwest Conference players in outfielder Jim Shamblin and first baseman Ed
Kneuper, heavy hitting center fielder Bob Brock, fastballing right handed pitcher Jim
Ehrler, and young infielder Ben Tompkins, to add to returnees Wall, Al Joe Hunt, Allen
Winters, and Frank Kana. Later, they added another college ballplayer, Texas A & M
infielder Cotton Lindloff, to play second base. The team thus completed its transition
9 Billeck was originally given an additional award. Zuber Tire Company of Houston gave $100 to
the tournament's best hitter. He had gone 13 for 32 to compile a .406 batting average, which was thought
to be the best in the tournament. But upon recalculation, the prize was awarded to Bill McLain of Angelo's
Cafe, who went 9 for 17 (.529) in his team's four games.
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Nesbitt Memorial Library. Nesbitt Memorial Library Journal, Volume 2, Number 1, January, 1992, periodical, January 1992; Columbus, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth151384/m1/8/?q=nesbitt%20memorial%20library%20journal: accessed November 19, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Nesbitt Memorial Library.