St. Joseph, MO., Gazette – January 27, 1956
Tonight’s Auditorium Wrestling Card
First Match Starts at 8:30
Feature Match – Mike DiBiase, 235, Lincoln, Neb., vs. Ike Eakins, 260, Harian County, KY, Best two out of three falls to a finish; no time limit.
Semi Windup – Ed Gardenia, 235, Youngstown, Ohio, vs. Jack Pesek, 232, Ravenna, Neb., Best two out of three falls, or a 45-minute time limit.
Special Event – Gentleman Jim Dobie, 225, Detroit, vs. Jerome Zackary, One fall, or a 30-minute time limit.
Added Attraction – Bibber McCoy, 230, Boston, vs. Don Whitehead, 227, Australia, One fall, or a 15-minute time limit.
It will be a clash between two of the Middle West’s undefeated heavyweights when Ike Eakins, Kentucky, and Mike DiBiase, Nebraska, collide tonight in the Auditorium’s wrestling ring. The meeting between the top-rated matmen is long overdue and the outcome will have a direct bearing on the regional supremacy issue.
A comparison of their respective records shows both me to be evenly matched for their victory skeins have been established over nearly every top heavyweight who has appeared in the area this winter. Eakins has been absent from the St. Joseph ring scene since Oct. 21 when he ousted Sonny Myers from the unbeaten ranks.
DiBiase employs strongarm measures in his matches which puts him on an even par with the rowdy 260-pound Kentucky mountaineer. A major point of interest in tonight’s wrestle to a finish is certain to be focused on Eakins’ use of the atomic drop, which resembles a pile driver. So far no opponent has been able to escape free from Eakins’ body drop.
Full ring length flying drop kicks and tackles are DiBiase’s most potent offensive weapons and may help to neutralize Eakins’ atomic drop. The Nebraska strong man is a three-time Big Seven intercollegiate heavyweight champion. Mike also won the National A. A. U. title in his weight division in 1946. He lettered for three years in football at the University of Nebraska.
Powerhouse wrestling will also keynote the semi-windup which pits towering Ed Gardenia of Ohio against Jack Pesek, who is the son of old John Pesek, the Nebraska “Tiger Man” of two decades ago.
Ed Gardenia, the colorful Ohio mat personality, is back in the United States following an extended tour of the South Pacific and Hawaii. He will be making his first Missouri appearance of the current season.
Bibber McCoy, the veteran Boston Irishman, tackles Australia’s Don Whitehead in the opener at 8:30.