On This Day

Events in Sport in 1978

AFC Championship

Jan 1 AFC Championship, Mile High Stadium, Denver: Denver Broncos beat Oakland Raiders, 20-17

  • Jan 1 NFC Championship, Texas Stadium, Irving: Dallas Cowboys beat Minnesota Vikings, 23-6
  • Jan 2 64th Rose Bowl: #13 Washington beats #4 Michigan, 27-20
  • Jan 2 44th Sugar Bowl: #3 Alabama beats #9 Ohio State, 35-6
  • Jan 2 44th Orange Bowl: #6 Arkansas beats #2 Oklahoma, 31-6
  • Jan 3 Indian cricket spin bowler B. S. Chandrasekhar becomes first in Test history to register identical figures in both innings (6 for 52) in Indian innings win over Australia in 3rd Test in Melbourne

Sports History

Jan 8 American Jimmy Connors beats Björn Borg of Sweden 6-4, 1-6, 6-4 to win his first and only season-ending ATP Masters Grand Prix tennis title at Madison Square Garden, NYC

  • Jan 15 Super Bowl XII, Louisiana Superdome, New Orleans, LA: Dallas Cowboys beat Denver Broncos, 27-10; MVP: Harvey Martin, Dallas, DE & Randy White, Dallas, DT
  • Jan 19 Eddie Mathews elected to Baseball Hall of Fame

Sports History

Jan 21 Panamanian boxer Roberto Durán becomes undisputed world lightweight champion with a 12th-round TKO of Esteban De Jesus at Caesars Palace, Las Vegas; defends his WBA title for 12th time, also takes De Jesus’ WBC title

  • Jan 23 NFL Pro Bowl, Tampa Stadium: NFC beats AFC, 14-13; MVP: Walter Peyton, Chicago Bears, RB
  • Jan 24 31st NHL All-Star Game, Buffalo Municipal Auditorium, Buffalo, NY: Wales beats Campbell, 3-2 (OT); MVP: Billy Smith, NY Islanders, G
  • Jan 25 Padres trade pitcher Dave Tomlin & $125,000 to Rangers for Gaylord Perry (He wins 1978 Cy Young Award)
  • Jan 28 Ranger's Don Murdoch failed on 4th penalty shot against Islanders
  • Jan 29 JoAnne Carner wins Colgate Triple Crown Match-Play Golf Championship
  • Jan 30 Addie Joss & Larry MacPhail elected to Baseball Hall of Fame
  • Feb 5 Fred Newman makes 88 consecutive basketball free throws blindfolded
  • Feb 5 28th NBA All-Star Game, Omni Coliseum, Atlanta, Ga: East beats West, 133-125; MVP: Randy Smith, SD Clippers, G

Sports History

Feb 11 25th hat trick in NY Islander history, Denis Potvin's 2nd

  • Feb 14 In girls' HS basketball, Chicago Latin beats Harvard St George
  • Feb 15 England all out 64 for 1st loss to NZ in cricket (Geoffrey Boycott captain)
  • Feb 18 1st Iron Man Triathlon (swim, bike ride, marathon) held, Kona, Hawaii
  • Feb 19 20th Daytona 500: Bobby Allison takes lead with 11 laps remaining; lowest starting position (33rd) for winner until 2007
  • Feb 24 Kevin Porter, NJ, sets NBA record with 29 assists in a game

Sports History

Feb 25 England cricket all-rounder Ian Botham scores first Test century, 103 v New Zealand in Christchurch

  • Mar 3 1st day of Test cricket for Desmond Haynes (WI v Australia)
  • Mar 4 25th ACC Men's Basketball Tournament: Duke beats Wake Forest, 85-77
  • Mar 7 Canuck's Ron Sedlbauer fails on 5th penalty shot against Islanders
  • Mar 9 Ice Dance Championship at Ottawa Canada won by Linichuk & Karponosov

World Record

Mar 12 Eric Heiden skates world record 1000m (1:14.99)

  • Mar 14 NFL permanently adds 7th official (side judge)
  • Mar 15 A's trade Vida Blue to Giants for 7 players & $390,000
  • Mar 18 Wales beats France, 16-7 at the National Stadium, Cardiff to clinch its 20th outright Five Nations Rugby Championship, a record 8th Grand Slam and record 3rd consecutive Triple Crown

PGA Players Championship

Mar 19 PGA Tournament Players Championship, Sawgrass CC: Jack Nicklaus wins his 3rd TPC title, 1 stroke ahead of Lou Graham; 4th straight start for Nicklaus that ends with a top-2 finish

  • Mar 20 Flyers' Rick MacLeash scores on 6th penalty shot against Islanders
  • Mar 21 Padres fire Al Dark (2nd manager ever fired during spring training)
  • Mar 27 40th NCAA Men's Basketball Championship: Kentucky beats Duke, 94-88; Wildcats 5th title; forward Jack Givens scores 41 points
  • Apr 1 132nd Grand National: Bob Davies aboard 14/1 chance Lucius wins by half a length from Sebastian V

Sports History

Apr 1 New York Islanders right wing Mike Bossy becomes first NHL rookie to score 50 goals in a season after scoring #50 and #51 in the closing moments in a 3-2 win over Washington

  • Apr 2 Jamaican batsman Basil Williams scores 100 on debut for the West Indies in Australia's 3 wicket 3rd Test victory in Georgetown, Guyana

Sports History

Apr 2 Czech tennis star Martina Navratilova wins her first WTA Tour Championship; beats Evonne Goolagong Cawley of Australia 7-6, 6-4 at Oakland Coliseum Arena

Sports History

Apr 7 US Court of Appeals upholds Commissioner Bowie Kuhn's voiding of attempted player sales by A's owner Charlie Finley in June 1976

US Masters Golf

Apr 9 42nd US Masters Tournament, Augusta National GC: 42 year old Gary Player shoots a record-tying final round 64 (−8) to win by 1 stroke from Rod Funseth, Tom Watson and Hubert Green

  • Apr 9 Brewers sweep Orioles 11-3, 16-3, & 13-5 (each with a grand slam)

Sports History

Apr 9 In separate NBA games Denver's David Thompson scores 73 points & San Antonio's George Gervin scores 63 points (33 in 1 quarter)

  • Apr 10 Formation of Major Indoor Soccer League announced

Sports History

Apr 16 Cardinals' Bob Forsch no-hits Philadelphia Phillies, 5-0, in St. Louis

Boston Marathon

Apr 17 82nd Boston Marathon: US double; Bill Rodgers wins his 2nd men's title in 2:10:13; Gayle Barron women's champion in 2:44:52

Sports History

Apr 23 Reds Joe Morgan ends record streak of 91 consecutive errorless games at 2nd

Baseball Record

Apr 24 Angels Nolan Ryan strikes out 15 Mariners, 20th time he has 15 in game

  • Apr 25 Phillie Phanatic makes 1st appearance
  • May 2 1978 NFL Draft: Earl Campbell from University of Texas first pick by Houston Oilers
  • May 3 Last cricket test match appearance for Bobby Simpson, at Kingston
  • May 3 WI all set to lose cricket test v Aust at Kingston till riots end game

Baseball Record

May 5 Cincinnati Red Pete Rose becomes 14th player to get 3,000 hits

  • May 6 104th Kentucky Derby: Steve Cauthen wins aboard Affirmed - first and only Derby victory and 1st-leg of Triple Crown
  • May 10 22nd European Cup: Liverpool beats Club Brugge 1-0 at London
  • May 17 Los Angeles Dodgers Lee Lacy hits record 3rd consecutive pinch-hit home run
  • May 20 103rd Preakness: Steve Cauthen wins aboard Affirmed for the 2nd-leg of the Triple Crown
  • May 23 AL approves transfer of Red Sox to Jean Yawkey for $15M

Sports History

May 25 Stanley Cup Final, Boston Garden, Boston, MA: 3-peat for Montreal Canadiens; beat Boston Bruins, 4-1 as Mario Tremblay scores twice; 4-2 series victory

  • May 28 Indianapolis 500: Al Unser Snr in a Lola dominates second half of race to hold off Tom Sneva for his third Indy victory

Sports History

Jun 1 Future England cricket captain David Gower makes his Test debut in 1st Test against Pakistan in Birmingham; England win by an innings and 57 runs

  • Jun 1 England cricket fast bowler Chris Old becomes only third man to capture 4 wickets in 5 balls in a Test, as Pakistan dismissed for 164 in 1st Test at Edgbaston; Old 5 for 70
  • Jun 3 Phillies Dave Johnson is 1st to hit 2 pinch hit grand slams in a year
  • Jun 4 Canadian Open Golf (Peter Jackson Classic), Lachute GC: JoAnne Carner wins by 8 strokes from Hollis Stacy
  • Jun 7 32nd NBA championship: Washington Bullets defeat Seattle Supersonics in 7 games
  • Jun 8 Braves draft Bob Horner #1

Boxing Title Fight

Jun 9 Larry Holmes beats Ken Norton in 15 for heavyweight boxing title

  • Jun 10 110th Belmont: Steve Cauthen wins aboard Affirmed to wrap up the Triple Crown
  • Jun 10 Yankees trade Ken Holzman for Ron Davis

French Open Women's Tennis

Jun 10 French Open Women's Tennis: Virginia Ruzici of Romania claims her lone major singles title; beats Mima Jaušovec of Yugoslavia 6-2, 6-2

LPGA Championship

Jun 11 LPGA Championship Women's Golf, Jack Nicklaus GC: Nancy Lopez wins by 6 strokes from fellow American Amy Alcott

French Open Men's Tennis

Jun 11 French Open Men's Tennis: Sweden's Björn Borg wins his 3rd French title; beats Guillermo Vilas of Argentina 6-1, 6-1, 6-3

Sports History

Jun 16 Cincinnati Red Tom Seaver no-hits St Louis Cards, 4-0

Sports History

Jun 17 Ron Guidry sets Yankee record with 18 strike-outs

US Golf Open

Jun 18 US Open Men's Golf, Cherry Hills CC: Andy North holds on for a 1-stroke victory over runners-up Dave Stockton and J. C. Snead to claim the first of his 2 US Open titles

  • Jun 19 Ian Botham takes 8-34 v Pakistan, his best Test cricket bowling
  • Jun 20 1st 6 teams of Women's Pro Basketball League (WBL) granted-Iowa, NJ, Milwaukee, Chicago, Minnesota & Dayton
  • Jun 25 FIFA World Cup Final, El Monumental, Buenos Aires, Argentina: Striker Mario Kempes scores 2 goals as Argentina beats the Netherlands, 3-1 after extra time

Baseball Record

Jun 30 Giants' Willie McCovey becomes 12th to hit 500 HRs

  • Jun 30 Future Baseball Hall of Fame outfielder Larry Doby becomes only the second African-American manager in MLB with the Chicago White Sox
  • Jul 2 MLB pitcher Ron Guidry beats Detroit 3-2 for a NY Yankee record 13-0 start to the season
  • Jul 7 Wimbledon Women's Tennis: Martina Navratilova wins her first Grand Slam singles title beating Chris Evert 2-6, 6-4, 7-5
  • Jul 7 NBA approves franchise swap; Buffalo Braves owner John Y. Brown and Harry Mangurian acquire Boston Celtics, while the Celtics owner Irv Levin gets Braves, later moved to San Diego to become the Clippers
  • Jul 8 Wimbledon Men's Tennis: Björn Borg of Sweden wins his 3rd straight Wimbledon singles crown; beats American Jimmy Connors 6-2, 6-2, 6-3
  • Jul 11 49th All Star Baseball Game: NL wins 7-3 at San Diego Stadium

Sports History

Jul 11 All star MVP: Steve Garvey (LA Dodgers) collects his second award

  • Jul 14 Umpire Doug Harvey ejects Don Sutton after discovering 3 scuffed balls
  • Jul 15 British Open Men's Golf, St Andrews: Jack Nicklaus completes 3rd career grand slam; wins by 2 strokes from Ben Crenshaw & Ray Floyd

Sports History

Jul 17 NY Yankee manager Billy Martin and Reggie Jackson fight in dug out after Jackson refuses to bunt, causing Martin to suspend him

  • Jul 19 New York Yankees start historic 14 game comeback with 2-0 win over the Minnesota Twins at Metropolitan Stadium in Bloomington, MN
  • Jul 23 US Open Women's Golf, CC of Indianapolis: Hollis Stacy successfully defends title by 1 stroke from Sally Little and JoAnne Carner

Sports History

Jul 23 MLB Philadelphia Phillies Steve Carlton becomes 78th MLB pitcher to win 200

  • Jul 23 Mayence returns to helps Yankees win their 5th straight game
  • Jul 23 65th Tour de France won by Bernard Hinault of France
  • Jul 24 Pete Rose ties NL hitting streak of 37 games

Sports History

Jul 24 Billy Martin resigns as Yankee manager after "one is a born liar the other a convicted one" comment about Steinbrenner and Jackson

Baseball Record

Jul 26 Johnny Bench hits his 300th career home run

  • Jul 27 Indians Duane Kuiper is 3rd to hit 2 bases-loaded triples (vs Yanks)
  • Jul 28 At Old Timer's Game it's announced Martin will again manage Yankees
  • Jul 29 On Old Timer's Day, NY Yankees announce that Billy Martin will return as NY Yankee manager in 1980 and Bob Lemon will become GM
  • Jul 30 Expos crush Braves, 19-0, collecting 28 hits & NL-record-tying 8 HRs
  • Jul 31 Cincinnati infielder Pete Rose singles off Phil Niekro to extend his hitting streak to 44 games as Reds edge Atlanta Braves, 3-2; ties Willie Keeler's 81-year-old NL record
  • Aug 1 Atlanta Braves trounce Cincinnati Reds, 16-4 and halt Pete Rose's NL record hitting streak at 44 games
  • Aug 5 New Orleans Saints beat Philadelphia Eagles 14-7 in an NFL exhibition at Mexico City's Olympic Stadium
  • Aug 5 The first all-seater stadium is opened in Aberdeen, Scotland; Aberdeen & London club Tottenham Hotspurs play a friendly to inaugurate the Pittodrie Stadium

PGA Championship

Aug 6 PGA Championship Men's Golf, Oakmont CC: John Mahaffey recovers from 7 down with 14 to play to force playoff; beats Tom Watson & Jerry Pate on 2nd hole

  • Aug 7 Eddie Mathews, Addie Joss and Larry MacPhail are inducted into Baseball Hall of Fame, Cooperstown, NY
  • Aug 25 MLB baseball umpires stage a 1 day strike
  • Aug 27 Dutch cyclist Gerrie Knetemann wins UCI Road World C'ship from Francesco Moser of Italy and Dane Jorgen Marcussenin in Nürburg, West Germany
  • Aug 27 Reds Joe Morgan is 1st to hit 200 HRs & have 500 stolen bases
  • Aug 27 Yankee Catfish Hunter's 6-2 win gives him a perfect 6-0 in Aug 1978
  • Aug 29 USTA National Tennis Center opens in Flushing NY
  • Sep 1 Baltimore Orioles pitcher Sammy Stewart fans 7 consecutive batters in his MLB debut, en route to 9-3 win v Chicago White Sox
  • Sep 2 Yankees right fielder Reggie Jackson hits his 20th HR of the season in a 6-2 home win over Seattle; 19th MLB player to hit 20 HR in 11 straight years
  • Sep 7 1st game of Boston Massacre, NY Yankees beat Red Sox, 15-3
  • Sep 8 2nd game of Boston Massacre; NY Yankees beat Red Sox, 13-2
  • Sep 9 3rd game of Boston Massacre; NY Yankees beat Red Sox, 7-0
  • Sep 9 Baltimore Orioles pull their 7th triple play (5-4-3 vs Toronto)

US Open Women's Tennis

Sep 9 US Open Women's Tennis, Flushing Meadows, NY: Chris Evert wins her 4th straight US singles title; beats fellow American Pam Shriver 7-5, 6-4; first time event played on hard courts

  • Sep 10 4th game of Boston Massacre; NY Yankees beat Red Sox, 7-4 to tie for AL East 1st place; Yanks out hit arch rivals, 67-21; score 42-9
  • Sep 10 US Open Men's Tennis, Flushing Meadows, NY: Jimmy Connors beats Björn Borg 6-4, 6-2, 6-2 to become the first player to win the US Open on 3 different surfaces

Sports History

Sep 10 The single point American Lotus driver Mario Andretti earns for finishing 6th at the Italian Grand Prix at Monza is enough to clinch his first Formula 1 World Drivers Championship

  • Sep 13 New York Yankees recover from 14 games behind to gain sole possession of AL East 1st place with 7-3 win over the Tigers in Detroit

Sports History

Sep 14 Braves' Jim Bouton, 38, beats Giants, his 1st win since 1970

  • Sep 15 Dodgers become 1st major league team to draw 3 million fans
  • Sep 16 New York Yankees beat Boston Red Sox, 3-2; at Yankee Stadium; Blue Bombers 6th win over arch rivals in 2 weeks
  • Sep 17 After 6 losses to the New York Yankees in September, the Boston Red Sox finally score a 7-3 win over their arch rivals at Yankee Stadium
  • Sep 24 Ron Guidry beats Cleveland 4-0, raising his record to 23-3 ERA 1.74
  • Sep 26 NY District Court Judge Constance Baker Motley rules that women sportswriters cannot be banned from locker rooms
  • Sep 30 Major Indoor Soccer League grants 1st 6 franchises to Cincinnati
  • Sep 30 Phillies clinch NL East title
  • Sep 30 Cleveland, Houston, NY, Philadelphia & Pittsburgh Phillies win 3rd consecutive NL East Division title
  • Oct 2 NY Yankees win 3rd straight AL East title beating Boston Red Sox, 5-4 in a dramatic single playoff game; Ron Guidry wins #25 aided by Bucky Dent's 3-run homer

Baseball Record

Oct 6 Royals' George Brett hits 3 HRs, Yanks win championship game 3, 6-5

  • Oct 7 LA Dodgers win the pennant
  • Oct 7 MLB National League Championship: Los Angeles Dodgers beat Philadelphia Phillies, 3 games to 1
  • Oct 7 MLB American League Championship: New York Yankees beat Kansas City Royals, 3 games to 1
  • Oct 8 Yanks win 3rd straight AL Championship, all against Kansas City
  • Oct 8 American Mario Andretti in a Lotus finishes 10th in the season ending Canadian Grand Prix at Île Notre-Dame Circuit, but wins his first Formula 1 World Drivers Championship by 13 points from Ronnie Peterson
  • Oct 11 Dodgers Bob Welch dramatically strikes out Reggie Jackson in 9th
  • Oct 13 Graig Nettles at 3rd makes many spectacular plays in WS game 3 as Guidry beats Dodgers, after trailing 2 games to 0 Yanks win next 4
  • Oct 14 NY outfielder Reggie Jackson causes World Series controversy; interferes with a throw to 1st, deflects ball away during Yankees, 4-3 Game 4 win over LA Dodgers at Yankee Stadium
  • Oct 14 Despite Denis Potvin hat trick in 3:21 NY Islanders lose 7-10 making Islander record when scoring a hat trick-22-2-1

Sports History

Oct 16 Test debut of Kapil Dev, India v Pakistan at Faisalabad

  • Oct 17 NY Islanders start a streak of 23 undefeated games at home (15-0-8)
  • Oct 17 Baseball World Series: NY Yankees repeat as champions; beat LA, 7-2 at Dodger Stadium for 4-2 series victory; MVP: NY shortstop Bucky Dent
  • Oct 17 Yanks win 22nd World Championship capping their great comeback year
  • Oct 18 NY Islanders 1st scoreless tie, vs LA Kings

New York City Marathon

Oct 22 New York City Marathon: Grete Waitz of Norway wins in her race debut in world record 2:32:30; Bill Rodgers wins his third straight title in 2:12:12

  • Oct 22 Grete Weitz runs female world record marathon (2:32:29.8)
  • Oct 24 NHL Toronto Maple Leafs set own team record of 28 pts vs NY Islanders
  • Oct 25 Padres Gaylord Perry is 1st to win Cy Young in both leagues (NL)

Sports History

Oct 28 Bobby Orr scores his last career NHL goal (vs Detroit Red Wings)

Sports History

Nov 2 Wayne Gretzky is sold to the Edmonton Oilers after just 8 games with the Indianapolis Racers of the WHA (scoring 6 points); scores 104 points in 72 games (both teams combined) and is named WHA rookie of the year

  • Nov 4 Islanders start 15 game undefeated streak (12-0-3)
  • Nov 4 3rd annual reentry free-agent draft, Pete Rose, Tommy John, & Darrell Evans, available
  • Nov 5 Oakland Raider's John Madden becomes 13th coach to win 100 NFL games
  • Nov 7 Boston Red Sox Jim Rice wins AL MVP
  • Nov 9 North American Soccer League (NASL) realigns its 24 teams into 6 divisions
  • Nov 10 Larry Holmes KOs Alfredo Evangelist in 7 for heavyweight boxing title
  • Nov 10 NY Yankees trade Lyle, Rajsich, McCall, Heath and Ramos to Texas for Righetti, Mirabella, Beniquez, Jemison and Griffin
  • Nov 15 Pirates outfielder Dave Parker wins NL MVP
  • Nov 16 Major Indoor Soccer League holds its 1st draft
  • Nov 19 "The Miracle at the Meadowlands", Eagles Herman Edwards returns a fumble for a touchdown with 31 seconds left to give Philadelphia a 19-17 victory over the rival New York Giants
  • Nov 19 28th NASCAR Sprint Cup: Cale Yarborough wins
  • Nov 21 Bob Horner of Braves wins NL Rookie of Year Award
  • Nov 26 CFL Grey Cup, CNE Stadium, Toronto: Edmonton Eskimos first of 5 straight titles; beat Montreal Alouettes, 20-13
  • Nov 28 44th Heisman Trophy Award: Billy Sims, Oklahoma (RB)

Sports History

Nov 28 Reds fire manager Sparky Anderson after 9 years

Sports History

Dec 1 Australian cricket fast bowler Rodney Hogg debuts in 1st Test v England in Brisbane; after Australia all out 116, Hogg makes instant impact by dismissing both high profile England openers Graham Gooch (2) and Geoff Boycott (13)

Sports History

Dec 2 Sunil Gavaskar scores his second double century (205) in Test cricket (as well as 73 on the final day) to guide India to a draw against the West Indies in the 1st Test in Bombay

  • Dec 2 43rd Iron Bowl: Alabama beats Auburn 34-16 in Birmingham
  • Dec 2 The Sporting News announces Baltimore Orioles shortstop Mark Belanger winner of his 8th (and final) MLB Gold Glove Award
  • Dec 5 Free agent Pete Rose signs 4-year, $32 million contract with Phillies becoming highest paid baseball player
  • Dec 5 Islanders took 28 shots in 1 period vs Penguins, Penguins' Ross Lonsberry failed on 7th penalty shot against Islanders
  • Dec 7 Islander's Mike Bossy's 1st career hat trick
  • Dec 8 Commencement of the 1st day/night World Series Cricket supertest at VFL Park, Melbourne
  • Dec 9 1st game of Women's Pro Basketball League (WBL), Chicago Hustle vs Milwaukee Does
  • Dec 10 67th Davis Cup: USA beats Great Britain in Rancho Mirage (4-1)
  • Dec 10 Islanders ends 15 game undefeated streak (12-0-3) to Canadians
  • Dec 15 Test Cricket debut of Malcolm Marshall, v India at Bangalore

NHL Record

Dec 23 NY Islanders center Bryan Trottier sets NHL record scoring 6 points - 4 goals & 2 assists - in 2nd period of 9-4 win over rival NY Rangers; adds goal & assist for game total 8 points; Islanders undefeated home streak stands at 16 games

  • Dec 25 8th Fiesta Bowl: #8 Arkansas ties #15 UCLA, 10-10
  • Dec 27 Ballon d'Or: Hamburg's English forward Kevin Keegan wins his 1st of 2 consecutive trophies as best football player in Europe; beats Barcelona striker Hans Krankl and Anderlecht winger Rob Rensenbrink
  • Dec 28 30th hat trick in Islander history (Mike Bossy)
  • Dec 29 Test Cricket debut of Allan Robert Border, v England at the MCG