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Jack Clements

The Olympic Club
Inducted as a Player in 1983

'The Handball Book', National Champion 1942.

There's an old proverb that says: "All things come to he who waits," and Jack Clements learned of its truth in 1942 when Platak was in the Navy.  Jack, the pride of San Francisco, and most certainly a great handball player, finally hit the jackpot.  In the finals of the 1942 tournament, he defeated Dan Marble, a fellow townsman, 21-5, 21-10.

 

During the Platak era, many good players never got their shot at the spotlight because of Joe's domination, and Clements certainly seemed to be one of these.  He reached the finals in 1938, 1939, and 1940 only to be defeated by the "Blonde Panther" from the Lake Shore Club.

In 1942, with Joe in the Navy, Clements finally got his chance and he took advantage of it by playing terrific ball.  Rarely has a national tournament been so thoroughly dominated by one player.  Clements defeated his first round opponent by the scores of 7 and 3; his second round opponent managed 5 and 5; his quarter-final foe got 5 and 1; and his semi-final opponent got 6 and 1.  That's an overall tournament average of 4.3, an all-time national tournament record.  Jack was a brewery worker in San Francisco.