Page 16-Tuesday, June 12, 1979-The Michigan Daily
STEFFEN BATTLES RECRUITING WOES:
By ALAN FANGER
Shari Steffen doesn't know who's going to be on
her Michigan women's gymnastics team next season,
and she hasn't the foggiest notion of who her assistant
coach will be.
Worse yet, she hasn't secured a single recruit for
the upcoming year.
That's a rather unenvious position for an athletic
coach to be in. But Steffen, who was named Friday to
succeed Scott Ponto, says a summer's worth of effort
can satisfy her goal-a respectable tumbling
"As long as I can get an assistant, we're not going
to have any big problems," said the former Illinois
But if Steffen considers that the only major hurdle
to gymnastic success, she will have to tackle a
multiude of smaller ones in the coming months.
There is, initially, a problem in convincing last
year's team members to compete this year. Mia Axon,
a solid all-arounder her first three years, has decided
to bow out of competition in her senior year. Mean-
while, several other Wolverines, including top per-
former Sara Flom, are undecided about tumbling for
Michigan this winter.
"I haven't talked to any of them personally," said
Steffen. "I did send them a summer conditioning
program, however ... a rather stiff one. I do plan on
contacting them before the summer's out."
coach has uphill climb
And Steffen hasn't given up the ship on Axon, who
wants to devote more time to her Music School
studies. "We're going to try and convince her to stay
around. She's important to the program," she said.
The naming of Steffen as new coach concluded a
two-month search which not only cost present team
members in indecision, but left Michigan stranded on
the recruiting highway.
Since Women's Athletic Director Phyllis Ocker
kept correspondence with interested gymnasts
during the search, Steffen is working with three
prospects who will soon decide whether to compete
for the Wolverines.
One of those tumblers, Dawn Kempthorn, is "a
sure bet" to arrive in Ann Arbor this fall, according
to Steffen. Kempthorn is a transfer from Clarion
State (Pa.), which finished third in the national
championships in March.
Steffen is also setting her sights on Diane McClain,
a Farmington Hills native. McClain has expressed an
interest in attending Michigan, although she has yet
to make a final decision on where she will attend
But the cream of this season's potential recruits is
Ann Arbor Pioneer High School sensation Angela
Deaver, whose brother Dorian competes for the
men's team. Deaver's most notable accomplishment
was her selection to the prep All-American gym-
nastic team last year.
"She's 99 per cent sure about coming here," said
Steffen of the hometown favorite. "I've been trying to
get in touch with her, but I understand she's quite
busy these days."
"It's not going to be a great recruiting year," she
continued. "Recruits could sign letters of intent Mar-
ch 1st, so most of the good kids have already been
In an effort to improve practice facilities, long a
topic of controversy, the Athletic Department pur-
chased some new equipment for the gymnasts to
work with. But Steffen sees more room for im-
provement in that area.
"We're going to have to make the best of it," she
said. "Hopefully, we'll get some heaters in there (the
Sports Coliseum). Apparently the girls were a bit
cold during practices last year."
So Steffen is besieged at the outset by personnel
and equipment problems; which, she candidly ad-
mits, will set the young team's progress a bit back-
"We're in a tough region, no question about that.
And we're not going to have a lot of depth this year.
You always want to improve, and I think we can im-
prove on sixth place (in the Midwest regional). That's
going to be our goal."
LEFL ORE, WHITAKER PACE TIGER WIN
Morris puts away Oakland, 3-1
By TOM STEPHENS first. After Ron LeFlore reached first times he came to bat, and Whitaker unable to get hits in several clutch
specialtothe Daily on an error, and was out trying to steal each scored in the fourth, with RBIs situations, stranded a total of 11 run-
DETROIT-The Detroit Tigers used second on a perfect throw by catcher going to Kemp and Rusty Staub. ners.
ten singles last night to get their Jim Essian, Lou Whitaker singled and YOUNG TIGER righthander Jack An unexpected ninth inning error by
current home stand off on the right foot, advanced smartly to second on Steve Morris went the distance against the defenseman replacement Aurelio
beating the Oakland A's and former Kemp's ground ball to the pitcher. weak-hitting A's, upping his record to 4- Rodriguez and a misplayed Texas
Troy right hander Steve McCatty, Jason Thompson slashed an RBI single 2 by scattering nine singles over the League fly-ball to right had most of the
previously unbeaten, 3-1. past short to give Detroit its early lead. nine innings. sparse crowd remaining in their seat
So far this season, the A's have Oakland tied the game briefly in the Neither team could manage an extra until the end of the game.
managed to look like at least the sem- fourth, pushing across a run on three base hit in the contest as the Tigers,
blance of a major league club on nights singles by Jeff Newman, Essian, and
when McCatty is pitching. Last night Derrek Bryant. But the Tigers roared
was no exception as they stayed in the back in the same inning to chase Mc-
contest until the final inning. Catty and score two more runs on four
THE TIGERS wasted no time at all in singles.
getting to McCatty in their half of the LeFlore, who reached base all five
Howe and Perry
don Dodger blue
By GEOFF LARCOM sday, while Howe is due to check in with
To be nattily clad in Dodger blue, the Dodgers' AA club in San Antonio
eyeing the plate from the pitcher's once he signs a contract with the parent
mound in Dodger Stadium ... club.
That's the scenario former Wolverine Howe put off his signing the dotted
pitchers Steve Perry and Steve Howe line until the Dodgers returned from
would ultimately love to enact, now that their road series against the Chicago
they've each been selected by the Cubs. Howe had reached a verbal
Dodgers in the first round of the free agreement with the Dodgers, but
agent draft. preferred to delay the actual signing
But first, the two Michigan aces must until a formal meeting could be
make names for themselves in the arranged.
Dodger's minor league system. Perry, In addition to centerfielder Rick
who signed a contract with the Dodgers Leach, who was selected by the Detroit
last Friday, will report to Los Angeles' Tigers, Howe and Perry comprised a
Class A affiliate in Lodi, Calif. on Thur- Wolverine trio drafted in the first
SCORES This past year at Michigan Howe
posted a 7-2 record, while striking out 46
with a 1.78 ERA over 75 innings. In
signing with the Dodgers, the record-
American League setting moundsman is forfeiting his
Toronto2, Seattle 0 final year of college eligibility.
Boston 4, Kansas City 0 - Perry, who graduated with a B.G.S.
Baltimore6, Chicago degree this spring, compiled a season
Detroit 3, Oakland 1 slate of 4-5, while racking up an im-
- National League pressive 48 strikeouts in 51 innings.
Philadelphia 4, Houston 2 While at Lodi, Perry will be under the
New York 3, Cincinnati 2 tutelage of Ron Perranoski, the former
Dodger relief ace.
Out of hand AP Photo
In an attempt to catch a fly ball, this unidentified Phillie fan was charged with a
fielding error, as he dropped his glove on the play.