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January 28, 1981 - Image 9

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1981-01-28

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The Michigan Daily-Wednesday, January 28, 1981-Page 9

Fricker scores in goal

With countless numbers of flashy and
often mind-boggling saves, Paul
Fricker has amazed thousands of
ichigan hockey fans for almost two'
A stick save to the left, a lightening
fast glove save at the right corner.
Fricker makes it look so easy now but it
wasn't always that easy for the Van-
couver native.
AT THE. RIPE young age of 11,
Fricker decided to take to the ice with
the'idea of playing forward foremost in
his mind.
After the young Fricker had pur-
chased all the equipment necessary to
play forward, he arrived late to prac-
tice on the first day and everyone was
already on the ice. As he sat there in the
locker room late and confused, the
coach came in and asked him if he
would play goalie, since no goalies had
shown up that day. Fricker accepted.
WHEN HE WAS finally dressed, he
came out to the ice. But since the
goalie-to-be had never skated before, he
took one step and fell to the ice in front
Wf the whole team. And so a career was
The early going was not all success
for the young left-hander. He had to
play the first week with right-handed
equipment, because the team did not
. have any for a south paw. And, in his
own words, he got "blown away" in
midget hockey. The summer came and
he was ready to quit.
But as the new midget season ap-
*proached,, he got a call from goalie
coach Vic LeMire, who saw him play
the year before. LeMire wanted
Fricker to net-mind for the midget
team he was coaching.
. F'RICKER LOOKING back on that
time said, "Being young and not having
anything else to do, I accepted."
LeMire's help turned a raW and in-
stinctive goalie into a junior all star and
rookie of the year. From there on it was
a story of success for Fricker.
Last season at Michigan he won his
first severn starts. He played in all of the
Wolverines' 26 WCHA games. He had
two 50-plus save nights. And he was
selected WCHA rookie of the year.
BUT IN THE pro draft, he was not
picked until the ninth round by Har-
tford. Many of his contemporaries
whose statistics are comparable to
Fricker's, were selected in higher
Fricker feels that this is because he
has an awkward looking style in the net.
"Do they want someone who looks good
and misses the puck, or someone that
looks like a bloody idiot and stops it,"
he said.
For this reason, when he was being
recruited by colleges, a number of
coaches would not even consider him.
He mentions Minnesota, North Dakota
and Michigan State as belonging to this
group. He says that Minnesota coach


Brad Buetow laughed in his face. But he
is quick to add with a smile, "That's-
why I like playing them."
DENVER WAS ONE school. that
wasn't bothered by his Awkward style.
They offered the goalie a full schoilar-
ship. And he accepted. But when the
high school year ended he found himself
one credit short of graduating, and he
had to wait to attend college.
The next year he was recruited by
Michigan even though coach Dan
Farrell had never seen him play.
Farrell went to Canada to see him, but
the one game out of 65 he chose to see
was the only game all season Fricker
did not play. But Fricker thinks that
LeMire,,talked to Farrell and convinced
him with the help of an assistant coach,
to bring the goalie to Michigan.
At Michigan, he had to face the
pressure of being the starting goalie
and a freshman. He credits much of his
success to LeMire's early training. The
rest he credits to a series of mental con-
trol and concentration exercises.
"WHAT I FEEL like on the ice is im-
portant. Being confident and ready,"
says Fricker. He tries not to worry
about it when he misses a puck and not

let it show.
One of the mental exercises he uses is
what he calls a mental imagery exer-
cise. In this exercise he tries to picture,
in his mind, a fictional situation, where
he is goalie in a game. Then as he pic-
tures opponents coming at him and
trying to put the puck past him into the
net, he imagines how he should react to
stop the puck.
"It's like programming your brain
into doing things you want it to do," he
Another exercise- he uses in
preparation for a game is simply con-
centrating on a puck. Fricker said he
sits for long periods of time staring at it
before a big game. Fricker sometimes
concentrates so hard in a game that
periods of three game minutes go by in
what seems like three seconds to
This year Fricker hopes to attain a
.900 save percentage or better. And he
also hopes to be selected All American.
HE says, "The highlight for me will
come at the end of the year if I keep
playing consistantly-well. If I don't get
it (.900 percentage) then it will be my
own fault."

*Vincent Price
~Oscar Wilde
' De lights

goaltender Paul Fricker, shown here
diving and scrambling against the
number one college hockey team in the
nation - the Minnesota Golden
Gophers. Fricker, with an excellent .900
save percentage, was referred to as
"one of the finest goaltenders in the
nation" by Gopher coach Brad Buetow.

February 5, 8pm
Power Center
Professional Theatre Program
Tickets at the PTP ticket office- Phone


t- WI

Tartans turf '1', 68-4




Despite Patrice Donovan's domination on the boards, the Michigan women's
basketball team fell to powerful Wayne State by a 68-47 score in Detroit last night.
The Tartans entered last night's game ranked number one in the state and
Michigan did nothing to alter their opponent's status, in spite of Donovan's 12
rebounds, as Wayne State controlled the tempo of the game from start to finish.
The key to the game was Wayne State's stifling defense, which totaled 11 steals.
This helped Wayne State to a 35-18 halftime lead. Although Michigan improved
their play in the second half, they were unable to overcome the Tartans' big lead.
Wayne State had three scorers in double figures. Leading the Tartans was
Stephanie Stone with 19 points, followed by Terri East and Carol Krause who
scored 16 and 10 points respectively.
Aside from Diane Dietz's 12 points, Michigan was led by Tammie Sanders with
10 points, and Donovan who scored six points.
Michigan entered the game ranked fifth in the state. The loss dropped- their
record to a disappointing 6-11, while Wayne State increased their record to 13-1.
The Wolverines take to the court again Saturday when they face Indiana State.
The game will be held at Crisler Arena and will begin at 2 p.m.
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