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September 05, 1985 - Image 69

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1985-09-05

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The Michigan Daily - Thursday, September 5, 1985 - Page 5C
Icers reach post-season;
future looks positive

N 1;
Daily Photo by DAN HABIB
Senior Chris Seychel and the Wolverine scoring-attack will need to revive their offensive output if Michigan
expects to go farther than the first round of the CCHA playoffs in 1985-'86.

Red Berenson's main objective is improvement. Hardly
an unusual goal, but one that has become an obsession
with Michigan hockey's second-year head coach.
Berenson finished his freshman season at the ehlm for
the Wolverines with an 11-20-1 Central Collegiate Hockey
Association record, 13-26-1 overall. By normal standards,
11-20-1 would be scraping league ineptitude,, but last
year's Wolverines were good enough to just miss upending
second-place Lake Superior in the first round of the CCHA
THE SOO LAKERS earned a top-ten-in-the-country
ranking for most of the season before Michigan State tur-
ned them away in the CCHA finals.'
So how good were the Wolverines?
It just doesn't matter, at least according to Berenson.
"The important thing is that our younger players continue
to improve," Berenson said with an eye to the future.
"The chemistry will hopefully improve too. I want us to
be a hardworking club. We had team spirit, but I would
look for our team confidence to improve."
AS RED fires his cigar, he talks briefly about the down
points of his first season and lights up about the future of
Michigan hockey.
"The winning and losing has been tough on me," he
noted, "but what's enjoyable for me is seeing progress,
some light at the end of the tunnel. We're still not going to
be pleased until we're making good progress on the ice,
that's the bottom line."
Progress last season, however, came slowly. After
opening the season with an impressive 4-2 mark, the
Wolverines' major problems surfaced. Rough, cold road
trips produced little for the "W" column, and many of the
players attributed the club's road problems to a mental
inability to prepare for contests away from Yost Arena.
"WE JUST didn't come ready to play," said downtrod-
den defenseman Jeff Norton after the Wolverines dropped
the away game of a home-and-home series to Bowling
Green early in the season.
Michigan did come ready to play when it really mat-
tered, or at least when it faced elimination from playoff
contention. In a late-season series at Ohio State, the
Wolverines swept the Buckeyes in miniscule OSU Ice Rink
(capacity, 1,400), sealing a berth in the CCHA Playoffs.

Finishing seventh in the league is nothing to boast
about, but compared to two consecutive ninth-place
finishes in the previous two years, Michigan gained
valuable ground.
BUT THERE'LL be many more times up and down the
ice before the Wolverines become a perennial power.
Berenson, however, knows where to start.
"My feeling and confidence about the team is documen-
ted by the play of some of the freshmen," he said. "The
future of the team is in the freshmen this year and the
freshmen coming in this year."
The future is bright. Berenson and Co. secured eight
solid newcomers last spring, despite what Michigh4'V
mentor labeled a not-so-strong recruiting year. The nuni-
ber one freshman will be Calgary, Alberta's Myles O'Con-
nor, a player who'll probably be taken in the first or
second round of the NHL draft. "We felt (O'Connor) was
the most sought after player in Canada," said Berenson.
LOST TO graduation was sharp netminder Mark
Chiamp. But Chiamp's vacancy should be fully filled by
sophomore Tim Makris, the 1983-'84 Massachusetts Goalie
of the Year, and newcomer Bob Lindgren, a US Junior
League goaltender.
On defense, Westborough, Mass. High's Billy Campbell
and Boston's Dan Campuano should fill another vacancy
created by senior Mike Neff's departure.
Add to that "pepper-pot centerman" (as Berenson put
it) Todd Brost, another Calgary product and a tier-two
Junior A player, transfer student Billy Powers, a right
winger, Mike Cusack from Anchorage, Alaska and Jeff
Urban, a Minnesota native and the Wolverines are well on
their way to a contributing freshmen class.
Besides Chiamp and Neff, Michigan will lose center-
captain Ray Dries, right wing Paul Kobylarz and left wings
Doug May and Paul Spring, but Berenson feels the
newcomers may step right in to the starting lineup.
"It's a big jump (from high school to college)," Beren-
son said, "but those that can make the jump will be a fac-
tor. It may take some time for the others, but we're giving
them the opportunity."
Those opportunities and an experienced group of retur-
ning lettermen should make Berenson's obsession worth-

17-2 grapplers finish
fifth in the country

Inexperience hurts women cagers

With a hard-working group of star-
ters, the wrestling team finished a
surprising fifth in the country last
winter, posting a superb 17-2 record
overall and 7-1 in the Big Ten.
Ahead of the Wolverines were the
invincible Iowa Hawkeyes and
second-place Wisconsin Badgers.
Michigan, however, avenged its con-
ference loss to Wisconsin by beating
the Badgers at the NCAA Champion-
FOR HEAD coach Dale Bahr, the
season was an exciting surprise
because he figured his club would be a
top-ten finisher, but not nearly as
good as it actually was. Bahr said the
Wolverines worked extremely hard,
taking third place in the Big Ten, and
added second place would be a
realistic goal for this season, behind
the never-faltering Hawkeyes.
The work of freshman John Fisher
was a highlight of the 1984-'T5 season.
Fisher was labeled the best fresh-
man in the country, grabbing more
victories than any first-year wrestler
in Michigan history. The Flint native,
competing at the 126- and 134-pound
slots, placed fourth at the NCAAs
behind national champion Barry
Davis of Iowa. Fisher, however,
shocked experts earlier in the season
when he upset Davis in a conference

At 118 pounds, junior William
Waters sported 30 victories against 16
losses. The Flint native also travelled
to the Nationals but failed to place in
the top four.
THE WOLVERINES will lose 126-
pound superstar Joe McFarland to
graduation along with Cleveland's
Bill Elbin at 190. Last season, Mc-
Farland recorded a second-place
national finish, just behind the
Hawkeyes. Like Fisher, McFarland
wrestled at 126 and 134, compiling an
amazing 43-3 mark. Elbin scored in at
33-14-2. Both wrestlers should be well-
replaced, according to Bahr.
The only disappointment last winter
was 142-pound Ricky Moore, a Mount
Clemens native. Moore secured a 24-
18-1 record but was hampered by in-
juries throughout the season.
Tony Latora at 150 also suffered in-
juries last season as did 167-pound
Kevin Hill. Hill began the season in
fine fashion before knee, shoulder and
wrist ailments turned his year down-
ward. Latora finished at 19-12 while
Hill ended the campaign at 24-10.
POSSIBLY the hardest, working
Wolverine was 158-pounder Steve
Richards. After a fifth-place finish at
the Big Ten Championships in 1983-
'84, Richards, a Lansing product, took
24 matches like Hill and Moore last

....best freshman in country

winter and dropped 18.
At 36-4-1, 177-pound Scott
Rechsteiner nailed down the best
winning percentage of any Wolverine.
Bay City's Rechsteiner wasn't a
flashy competitor, but "he got the job
done," as Bahr put it.
Like McFarland, heavyweight Kirk
Trost took second in the country at the
NCAAs. On the way to his 44-11 mark,
Trost upset a phenomenal number of
the NCAA's best, and Bahr felt the
New Lenox, Illinois native probably
should have won the national cham-
Among Michigan's accomplishmen-
ts last season were a victory over
national power Iowa State and a
championship at the Ohio Open in
November, the team's first ever win
in that tournament.

Don't look for a sophomore jinx to
hit the women's basketball team this
season. Nothing could possibly make
things worse than last season's
"freshman" year.
The Wolverines finished dead last
in the Big Ten a year ago with a 1-17
conference mark. After opening well
(6-4 in non-league play), the squad fell
apart, losing its last 14 games.
PART OF the reason for the team's
demise was the tougher Big Ten com-
petition, but most of the problems
were caused by inexperience.
First-year coach Bud VanDe Wege
was starting two freshmen, Lorea
Feldman and Kelly Benintendi, and
utilizing another, Sarah Basford, as
the first player off the bench. With a
year of college ball behind them, the
outlook for the future is potentially
Feldman, a 6-0 forward, led the
team with a 13.7 points per game
average and 7.1 rebounds per game.
Her dead-eye long-range jumpers
helped her shoot 51.8 percent from the
floor, making Feldman the only
Wolverine to sink more than'half of her
Benintendi, easily the team's most
improved player, turned into a solid
guard by season's end. Her backcourt
partner, senior Orethia Lilly, led the
team in assists. Basford should see
significant playing time as the third

Recruits, expe ne nce,
should spur success
for new-look spikers

guard in 1985-'86.
SENIOR WENDY Bradetich should
inherit the team leader's role in the
upcoming year. Bradetich, a physical
forward, can hit from inside and out-
side. The Eugene, Oregon native was
the team's high scorer in her
sophomore season.
Sandy Svoboda could well be the

team's new center. Diana Wiley's
graduation has opened up the pivot
spot. Svoboda saw limited action last
season but as she played more
minutes, her productivity increased.
She was among the team's top
rebounders in the second half of the

To some, two coaching changes
in as many years would indicate a
bleak immediate future for the
women's volleyball team.
Not so, says 1984 head coach
Barb Canning.
"We lost a lot of close matches
this year," Canning lamented,
"but next year the results will be
completely different."
AND NOW for something com-
pletely different-a new and

Tumblers return

It appears that the men's gymnastics team is
ready to challenge for the Big Ten title after two
seasons of rebuilding, and a last place conference
finish last year. The team will only lose two
Oseniors to graduation, and a young squad will
Coach Bob Darden, who will begin his third year
as Wolverine head man, is encouraged about this
season, but does not want to use his team's youth
as an excuse for its performance. "We are done
saying we are young and rebuilding. We could use
that excuse two years ago, but it wore out this past
season," said Darden. "Everything from here on
out reflects the amount of work and effort we put
out in our sport."
THE TEAM will have an excellent nucleus of
all-arounders returning. They include juniors
Gavin Meyerowitz and Mitch Rose, and
sophomore Craig Ehle. Meyerowitz had an out-
standing 1985 campaign, and he was voted the
team's most valuable gymnast. Rose competed in
the NCAA championships on the still rings, and
finished 16th despite only being .15 points behind
the first-place finisher. Rose was voted team cap-
tain for 1985-86. In his first year, Ehle performed
with the poise of an upperclassman.
The lineup will be bolstered by junior Brock Or-

Nelson is one of the team's st
both the floor exercise and the
Sophomores Ken Haller,
Scott Moore made heavy cont
and should be much improved
The Big Ten will again be
gymnastics conferences in th
NCAA champions Ohio Stat
Iowa participated in the NC
nesota was the first alt
graduated ten seniors, so th
wide open for any team to <
Women look to NCA
The goal this season for

strong nucleus
nastics team is to reach the NCAA regionals. Last
eadiest performers in year the team achieved all of coach Dana Kem-
e high bar. pthorn's goals except being invited to the
Nick Lanphier, and regionals. These goals included gymnasts setting
tributions last season new personal marks, having a higher team
d for this year. average than the previous season (it was four
one of the toughest points higher), and finishing no worse than the
ie nation. Last year's previous year's fourth-place mark in the Big Ten
e won the Big Ten. championships (the team finished fourth).
'AA finals, and Min- "Our prospects for this season look very good,"
ernate. Ohio State said Kempthorn. "We recruited some strong all-
e Big Ten should be around performers with high skill levels. I am
capture the title this very excited about this year's recruits."
THE WOLVERINES will lose seniors Dayna
tAs Samuelson, Christy Schwartz, Andrea Scully, and
the women's gym- Patti Ventura. All four competed in the all-around,
and their leadership will be missed. Seniors Terri
Shepherd and Caren Deaver will try to fill the
leadership role.
The top returning gymnasts are Angela
Williams, and Heidi Cohen. Williams, the team's
sterling performer, finished fifth in the all-around
in the Big Ten championships. She also qualified
for the regionals but did not compete due to injury.
Cohen's hard work and determination made her
one of the team's toughest competitors.
The return of sophomore Karen Ghiron will be a
bonus for the team. Ghiron missed all of last
season with a knee injury. Coach Kempthorn is

healthy version of the Wolverines
(with a yet unnamed head coach at
press time).
Last season, Michigan was
plagued by a series of injuries to its
top athletes which severly ham-
pered the club. Sophomore setter
Lisa Vahi was sidelined the entire
first half of the season with thumb
and wrist ailments, junior Jayne
Hickman was lost to a broken
finger during the second half and
sister Jennifer Hickman battled
the whole season with an ankle in-
jury assumed to be a stress frac-
With her stars healthy, Canning
figured her 11-16 (1-12 in the Big
Ten) rookie season would have.
been dramatically more suc-
cessful. "It (healthy players)
would have made a big differen-
ce," said Canning. "With the in-
juries, we had to continually
change our strategy with new
STRATEGY and lineups won't
be Canning's concern in 1985, as
she departs with her husband who
received a new job offer. Canning,
nonetheless, and the athletic
department were taking ap-
plications last spring for the
coaching vacancy with an eye for
the future.
"It (last season) could have been
better," said Canning, "but I
wasn't expecting a lot. We should
Michigan's improvement no
doubt will be generated by last
year's experience and a solid set of
newcomers. New to the Wolverines
this season will be Marie-Ann
Davidson, a Canadian National
player, Livonia's Pam Griffin and
Portige Northern High School's
Toni Hall, a player from
Michigan's number one high
school club along with a good cropnT

... real asset when healthy


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