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October 26, 1979 - Image 14

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1979-10-26

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Page 14-Friday, October 26, 1979-The Michigan Daily






It is often said that the formula for
winning hockey requires such in-
tangible elements as team spirit,
momentum, and the innate knowledge
of where your teammates will be at any
given moment. Whether or not the 1978-
79 Michigan hockey team possessed
these ingredietis is up for debate,
however, the fact remains that tp win
Dan Lerg
you must score, and this they did not do.
Last year the Wolverines were last in
the WCH A in goals scored (117) and last
in the standings. Through their last
twenty games, during which time they
were 1-18-1, the Blue icers averaged
only 3.30 goals per game while their op-
.ponents tallied an average of 6.40
THE WEIGHT OF this deficiency
Ialls primarily on the shoulders of the
forwards. As a group they mhust over-
eome both last year's scoring slump
Vnd the injury factor which hit them so
;ard in '78-'79. ,
According to 'coach Dan Farrell,
Michigan's recruiting was aimed
primarily at adding scoring punch.
"We had to find some forwards who
could score," said Farrell, "and I think.
we've got some. We've shown in a few

ejuvenation in order

scrimmages that we can score - and
that's a good sign." w
Perhaps the most promising
newcomer is freshman center Bruno
Baseotto, who Farrell has slated as a
winger on the power play. The other
potential goal-scoring freshmen are
wingers Billy Reid, Ted Spears, Brad
Tippet, Julio Van Biesbruck, and Joe
Milburn, and center Terry Manning.

Eaves, 12 goals and22 assists in only 23
games, was checking in with torn car-
tilage in his knee.
DUE LARGELY to these untimely in-
juries, the Wolverine offehse never
really got untracked. But with the usual
pre-season optimism, Farrell is con-
fident about this year's attack. "If our
forwards stay healthy, we will have a
lot more firepower."

For the Michigan hockey team's
sake, 12 months time has done more
than just tack another year onto its
defensemen's ages. Hopefully, one
year's time has brought a combination
of experience and confidence which will
result in a much improved defense.
This will have to be the case if the
icers intend to improve on 'their

: a year of in
Blum and Mark Perry and senior Dave
FARRELL IS optimistic that his
defense can and will be better than last
year. "The defense is more mature
than a year ago. It's now just a matter
of seeing how they react in a game
situation,".said Farrell.
Aside from Farrell, the players
themselves seem to think that last


Tim Manning

John Blum

compared to the 132 goals the icers
netted themselves.
UNLESS THE Wolverines improve
on the lowest scoring offense in the
WCHA, the defense will be relied on
heavily to keep the team in the game.
According to the Wolverine defen-
semen, their primary concern in im-
provement is clearing the puck out of
Brian Lundberg
We have to be able to get the puck dut
of our own end and get it to the forwar-
ds," said Manning. "It's the most imn-
portant thing we havie to do, and its the
hardest thing we have to do."
Michigan's 'defensemen will once
again be counted on to provide a bit of
offense as Mianning was last year's
third leading poin getter' (34), but
scoring is secondary for the defer-
"The coach would. like to see us
score a few goals, but defense if our fir-
st priority," said Blum.
Call. it 52 weeks or 364 days.
Whatever, one year's experience may
prove invaluable to the Wolverines'
defensive corps in improving on las~t
year'sdlisappointing season.

Doug Todd

THE BULK O the responsibility,
however, still remains with the core of
nine returning Wolverine scorers, for
according to Farrel, "The WCHA has
never been a freshman league."
Left-winger Doug Todd, the team's'
captain, summed it up when he said,
"The big guns have got to produce,"
citing that his own point production of
twenty-four last year (12 goals, 12
assists) must improve.
The Michigan centermen were a bat-
tered battalion last season, losing both
Terry Cullen and Dan Lerg in the early
going. Cullen was put out for the year
with a severe neck injury and has since
retired from hockey, while Lerg (12-19-
31) returned in January. Unfortunately,
just as Lerg checked out of sick bay,
standout freshman center Murray

The most important "if" appears to
be centered around the condition of
Eaves' knee. He strained the cartilage
again this summer while working out
with the Canadian Olymnpic team and is
now near the end of a summer-long
rehabilitation program. According to
Eaves, the knee is "95-100 per cent" and
he is looking forward to "a full and
productive season.
The Wolverines will also need a much
more productive season from 6-3, 210
left winger Gordie Hampson (six goals,
six assists in 36 games). Hampson, one
of the nation's most heavily, recruited
players in 1977, has yet to play up to his
Other forwards that the Blue offense
will rely on are juniors John Olver (10-
18-28) and Jeff Mars (8-10-18).

disastrous 8-27-1 record of one year ago,
since coach Dan Farrell recruited no
freshman defenseman for the '79-'80
Why? The answer is simple. "We had
more important priorities than
recruiting defensemen," said Farrell.
THUS, FARRELL has rested his
hopes on last year's returning defen-
semen, led by alternate captain Tim
Manning. The 5'-11", 180-pound junior
from Dearborn Heights led the team in
assists (27) last season and was the first
winner of the' Vic Heyliger Trophy as
Michigan's Outstanding Defenseman.
Other members of Michigan's defen-
sive corps are sophomores Brain Lun-
dberg, Paul Brandrup, Dave Richter
and Steve Richmond, juniors John

year's experience will pay off this
"A year of experience is going to help
us out a lot," said Brennan, a 6'-3",
185-pound veteran defenseman from
Weston, Ontario. "We won't make the
mistakes we did last year. We used to
choke a lot. This year we're going to
create more opportunities for the offen-
se to score."
"We have a lot more experience and
confidence in each other. That's the
main thing," said Blum, a 6'-2", 200-
pound defenseman from Warren.
"We're all pretty confident; we think
we can get the job done."
One area where the icers must im-
prove is in the number of goals allowed
to the opponent. Last year, the
Wolverines gave up 210 goals

Improvement in goal
a must for Michigan

Farrell plays summer plumber

As the Michigan hockey team skates
:into the frozen battleground, a lonely
ole glides to one end of the area. Clad
n his bulky padding, he is prepared for
Rcombat, and come flailing sticks,
-hurling bodies, or flying skates, he is
out to stop the whizzing black disc that
his enemy will skillfully rifle at him.
The goaltender is the last bastion of
defense for his unit and a year ago
Michigan coach Dan Farrell's nets
were protected as well as Pearl Harbor
when the Japanese bombed it in 19441.
The trio of Rudy Varvari, Bob Sutton,
and Peter Mason tried fruitlessly to
stop the puck in giving up nearly six
goals per game.

made 15 appearances for Farrell. His
major problem was inconsistency. In
his debut he turned away 56 Bowling
Green shots and picked up his only win
of the year. He had two other games in
which he stopped over 50 shots but his
6.39 goals against speaks for the rest of
his performances.
THE OTHER returning netminder is
sophomore Mason who saw action in
only six games last year, but he had the
best goals against average at 4.85.
The most promising prospect in the
'79-80 crop has to be freshman Paul
Fricker. If Fricker's past performan-
ces are any indication of how he will,
perfor m for- the Wolverines he may
very well help the team into the WCHA
The Vancouver native was named the
goalie of the year in the Pacific Coast
junior league and was a Pacific League
All-Star the last two years. And in the
opening series against Bowling Green
this year Fricker turned in two fine per-
formances.-He allowed five goals in his
debut, but that can be expected from a
freshman in his first outing. The next

Paul Fricker
night he settled down and stopped all
but two of the Falcons' shots. But more
importantly he looked sharp and made
some nifty saves when there was no one
between him and the opposing forwar-
ONE THING THE goalies have
working in their favor is the addition of
graduate assistant goalie coach Don
Boyd. Boyd played for Bawling Green
and was named to the second team All-
Central Collegiate Hockey Association
in the 1972-73 season. This is the first
time Farrell has had a goalie coach sin-
ce the 1976-77 season when his team lost
in the NCAA finals to Wisconsin.
Although last year was disastrousefor
the Wolverine netminders, so was Pearl
Harbor for the U.S. in 1941 and they still
won the war.

Between seasons, a hockey coach is
more like a plumber thanda coach.
Because of graduation and obvious
weaknesses, he has to repair the leaks
in his hockey club.
The only way a coach can go about
fixing those leaks is through recruiting.
But recruiting the cream of the crop
can be difficult when you team finished
last in its league with a 6-25-1 record.
THIS PAST YEAR, Michigan head
"plumber" Dan Farrell had the ar-
duous task of repairing the leaks in his
offense (the WCHA's lowest scoring of-
fense in '78-'79). His patchwork resulted
in seven of the Wolverines' eight
recruits being forwards. The other
recruit was a goaltender, netminding
being another area of concern last year.
Among the recruits Farrell is hoping
will plug some holes are right winger
Bruno Baseotto, goalie Paul Fricker
and center Terry Manning, brother of
junior defenseman Tim Manning.
Will these and the other newcomers
be able to contribute immediately?
"They all can play and make a con-
tribution, but you can't say how much a
freshman is going to contribute right
away, because this hockey is better

than any hockey they've ever played
before," said Farrell.
"THEY'LL ALL SEE some action,
but it's not fair to say that a freshman
will come in and be a star," Farrell
continued. "This (the WCHA) is not a'
freshman league. It never has been."
Nevertheless, the freshmen think
that they'll be able to lend a hand. "I

think I can contribute," said Baseotto,
a 5'-10", 170 pound right winger from
Calgary, Alberta. "I think I can provide
leadership. All I have to do is practice
and work hard. It's all up to myself."
According to Farrell, one plus about
this year's freshman class is that they
are more mature and older than in past
"We have 19 and 20-year-old fresh-
nan, instead of 17 year olds. It makes a
difference," said Farrell.
Six of the eight freshmen recruits are
either 19 or 20-years-old.
OTHER MEMBERS of the Wolverine
freshman class are left wingers Joe
Milburn, Brad Tippet and Julio Van-
Biesbruck, and right wingers Billy Reid
and Ted Speers.
Speers and VanBiesbruck are
Michigan natives, Speers a hometown
boy from Ann Arbor Pioneer High
School, and VanBiesbruck out of
The freshmen don't seem to be
worried about the 'competition either,
despite the talent being better. than
anywhere they've played before.
"If you start worrying about the
competition when you're a goalie, you'd
might as well pack it up," said Fricker,
the only lefthander in Michigan's goalie
"The competition is much better than
anywhere I've even played before.
Everyone can do everything well. The
skaters are faster and the defense is the

Bruno Baseotto

Olympics pare WCIArosters

Rudy Varvari

But this year Farrell is cautiously op-
timistic. "I feel our goaltending will be
a little better and our defensemen are
more mature, and that will help out."
SO WHO WILL be the number one
goaltender this year is anyone's guess.
"Right now we are looking for who will
stop the puck and whoever can stop the
puck best will play the game, and if we
can find two that can stop the puck,
they will both play," said Farrell.
Not a bad philosophy, but one that
may be hard to follow with four net-
minders vving for the position. Varvari

Every four years a plague sweeps the country,
emptying college hoekey teams of their prime
athletes, and undoing years of recruitin with the
potential to upset the standings.
This "plague" is the rush for the Olympics, and the
extent of its devastation to a team depends on how
many players were lost-if any.
This year six teams from the Western Collegiate
Hockey Association (WCHA), Minnesota, North
Dakota, Minnesota-Duluth, Wisconsin, Michigan
Tech and Denver, lost players to the U.S. and
Canadian Olympic teams, and these losses were
apart from the expected losses due to graduation.
Minnesota was second in last year's WCHA stan-
dings, not to mention the winner of the NCAA cham-
pionship, and would probably have a good shot at a
top spot in the league again this year except for the

through the ykar with a young team. "I think the kids
realize the effect (of losing players). They've come a
long way; they're rising to the occasion," said
However, Buetow would not speculate on the up-
coming season. "I don't know if there will be much of
an effect," he said. "Certainly we lost in numbers.
We lost close to ninety percent of our goal produc-
John Gasparini, of last year's number one North
Dakota team, which lost Dave Christian to the U.S.
and Kevin Maxwell to the Canadian Olympic teams,
commented that, "(Minnesota) lost the nucleus of a
championship team. Their circumstances are
greater than ours in terms of numbers, but I'm sure
they have adequate personnel."
And as for the Sious' own losses: As a coach you
can't worrv habout a nls .nyo havet n worrv abni tthe

ture. "He was our leading scorer and our key man in
the power play."
"We're still trying to regroup," Hendrickson add-
ed. "We have a long way to go."
The exception to the doubtful attitude held by most
coaches is Michigan Tech's John Macinnes, who
stressed the positive aspects, both for the team and
the individual. The Huskies lost top defenseman Tim
Watters to Canada. "It's a great experience for him
(Watters), and it's great exposure for the university,
and I'm all for it," Macinnis declared.
"We'll miss him,'' Maclnnis added, "but I think the
players feel it's an honor, and they'll play better
because of it."
Other players lost in the league were Wisconsin's
Mark Johnson, and Ken Barry and Glenn Anderson of
Denver who went to the Canadian team. Johnson was
WCHA's second leading scorer last year, with 28
galns and 41 asists.

Brad Tippett

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