Looking back at the Yoemen in 1967 and 1968

By Bertie Shuemate



After finishing a great 11-1 season in 1965, George Kirk would leave Yoe High to return to his alma mater, Littlefield.

The board voted unanimously to move defensive coordinator Ken Fuqua to the head job. A good decision as the Yoemen would have back-to-back district championships in ’66 and ’67.

The 1966 team would lose their first two games to rivals Taylor (19-9) and Rockdale (20-13). Cameron was a 2A team now, while the Ducks and Tigers were in 3A. The Yoemen would not lose another game until the regional finals.

Wins over Rosebud (15-6), Georgetown (28-7), and Copperas Cove (24-8), ended pre-season play. 

Up first in district was the heavily favored Hearne Eagles. The Eagles were rated as high as number one in the polls but eh Yoemen had then on Yoe Field and defeated them 15-7. They were so high after that win; they came out flat the next week in Caldwell. They did escape with at tie 14-14. They finished the nine-game season with wins over Navasota (44-14) and Giddings (13-8).  Hearne would finish 9-1, but stay home.

IN bi-district Fuqua’s Yoemen would down a very good Del Valle squad 23-14. One of his best friends was a head coach of the Cardinals, so it was a sweet win. Of course the two teams would meet a year later in bi-district and Del Valle would win 14-0. The regional finals were the next week against a growing town, Bastrop. It was played on Tiger Field in Rockdale and the Bears would win a close one 14-7.

Feature players in 1966 were QB Donnie Mitchell, Bill Goeke, Leon Michalka, Jimmie Kopriva, James Dohnalik, Wayne Kirk, Glenn Fogle, four-year starter Don Manley, Ray Urban, Mike Miller, Jim Lafferty, David Barrett, Steve Smith, Jack McKinney, Joe Fisher and David Kratochvil.

The Yoemen started 1967 off losing four in a row to Taylor (35-6), Rockdale who was number one in 3A (39-0), Rosebud (2-0), and Georgetown (6-0). They would win their final preseason game 17-0 over Copperas Cove, and then go undefeated in district winning 28-0 over Hearne, 14-13 over Caldwell, 31-0 over Navasota, and 10-0 over Giddings. Then as I mentioned earlier Del Valle would get revenge in bi-district, winning in Belton 14-0 ending a 5-5 season.

Back from 1966 were Kirk, Fogle, Dohnalik, Miller, Lafferty, Hefft and Barrett. Others were Charles Maddux, James Nachlinger, Martin Mueck, John Eisfeldt, John Urban, John Hosch, Dennis Crouch, Paul Chandler, Dwight Jekel, Ronnie Richardson, Dennis Chapman and Bill Perrin.

Other coaches in 1966 were Dan Murrah, Robert Kraemer and Don Wiggins. In 1967 they were Hal Stanislaw, David Siler and Edgar Glasscock.

Other sports coaches in 1966 were basketball Dan Murrah. The team went 6-13 and was led by Wayne Kirk and Donny Mitchell. Coach Robert Kraemer led the JV team 5-8. In football Kraemer’s JV team won district 3-0-1. Murrah’s freshmen went 3-2-2. Don Wiggins eighth graders were second at 6-2, while Jack Ruzicka coached the seventh grade to a 3-2 third place.

Track had a great year. Not only did they win the Cameron Relays for the first time in 32 years, but they took district with 169 points. Leo Michalka, Glenn Fogle, Mike Miller, Bill Goeke, and Jim Lafferty were outstanding but Paul Chandler and Wayne Kirk won regional titles in mile run and discus. At state Kirk won a third place medal while Chandler was seventh with a time of 4:29. He will be back.

In 1967 David Siler has basketball. They went 4-16, but Wayne Kirk was outstanding setting a school record for points in a game with 38. Hal Stanislaw coached the JV-Freshmen 4-11. Edgar Glasscock coached 8th grade and Charles Altman coached 7th grade.

Track had another banner year led by Kirk, Chandler, Fogle, Miller, Jerry Richardson, Robert Wernette, Gary Curtis, Kenneth McLerran, Al Hefft, Dennis Chapman, Doug Marburger, Robert Brashear, John Urban, John Hosch, and John Black who all scored in district. Giddings nudged the Yoemen 184-152 for the crown. Kirk got second in discus at state (167’2) while Chandler took first in the mile run (4:23.2). He ran 4:18 in a warm up meet in Corpus a week earlier.

The boy’s golf took first in district led by Danny Monroe (medalist), Roy Thompson, George Foster, Richard Anderson and Jim Bowman. Jack Glass won tennis singles while Jackie McKinney and Donny Mitchell won doubles. Girl’s tennis has Sharon Cook and Anita Litzman second in senior doubles. Kitty Kestenbaum was second in senior singles.

In 1968 Sharon Nigliazzo and Janice Eichenhorst were second in doubles, while Bobby Dorner and Al Hefft were second in boys doubles. No coaches were mentioned for spring sports. Go Yoe!