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BASEBALL—DICK GROAT, 30-year-old shortstop for Pittsburgh who has been with the Pirates ever since he stepped off the campus at Duke University eight years ago, was named the Most. Valuable Player in the National League by the Baseball Writers Association. Groat hit .325 during the season and, though he had only two home runs and 50 RBIs, his leadership was a major factor in Pittsburgh's pennant victory. Runner-up was third baseman and fellow teammate Don Hoak, who received 162 points to Groat's 276. The AMERICAN LEAGUE awarded the new Washington, D.C. franchise to a 10-man syndicate headed by Lieut. General Elwood Quesada, present administrator of the Federal Aviation Agency. Quesada in turn disclosed the syndicate had named Mickey Vernon, Pittsburgh coach, as manager, and Edward S. Doherty, president of the American Association, as general manager of the new team. Vernon, a Washington hero, was the Senators' only two-time (1946 and 1953) American League batting champion. Quesada also announced the new club would retain the name of Senators.
BASKETBALL—PHILADELPHIA, after a fast start, dropped three straight last week, to Cincinnati, Detroit and Syracuse, not so much on their opponents' new-found strength as on Wilt Chamberlain's weakness at the free-throw line. In the game against Detroit, which the Warriors lost by only one point (119-118), Chamberlain missed eight out of 13 free throws; against Syracuse, also a one-point defeat (106-105), Chamberlain missed 18 out of 27, for a season total of 63 in 164 attempts. "Unbelievable," said Syracuse's Dolph Schayes, NBA alltime scorer, who the night before the Syracuse victory over Philadelphia made his 16,000th point. "Any high school kid could do better."
Elgin Baylor, pacing the Los Angeles Lakers to an easy 123-108 victory over New York, set an NBA individual single-game scoring record of 71 points (28 field goals, 15 free throws) to break his old record of 64 points set last year in game against Boston. PHILADELPHIA, leader in NBA Eastern Division standings; ST. LOUIS, leader in Western Division.
BOXING—EDER JOFRE of Brazil won the National Boxing Association version of the world bantamweight championship with a one-punch KO over Elroy Sanchez of Mexico, at Los Angeles. In the sixth round Jofre fired a right to the jaw that put the game Mexican away, thereby earned the right to meet France's Alphonse Halimi, Europe's world champion, in a bout to end the world title dispute.
Luis Manuel Rodriguez, undefeated contender for the welterweight title, slugged his way to his 34th victory with a 10-round decision over Yama Bahama of Bimini, in Miami Beach.
Gene Armstrong, trading freely with Henry Hank, won a 10-round decision in middleweight bout at Madison Square Garden.
CROSS-COUNTRY—PENN STATE checked Michigan State's bid for its fifth consecutive IC4A championship when three of its runners finished among the first 10 in the hilly five-mile trot at Van Cortlandt Park in New York. Penn State had a low score of 70 points, while Army, second, had 119, and Michigan State, third, had 130. Individual winner was BOBBY LOWE of Brown, who took the lead from the 180 runners at the halfway point, finished 50 yards ahead of Larrie Sweet of Alfred. Lowe's time: 25:40.4.