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October 09, 1986 - Image 8

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1986-10-09

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Page 8 - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, October 9, 1986

4

'86-'87 MICHIGAN HOCKEY PREVIEW
Red relying on Blue-chip prospects

4

By ADAM SCHEFTER
A fair warning to all Wolverine
hockey fans: have your programs
ready tomorrow night when the
squad opens up against Bowling
Green.
This year's team has a different
look, with ten newcomers. Ten
newcomers who can play. Ten
newcomers who can reverse
Michigan's fortunes and make Yost
Ice Arena the hot place to be during
the bitter cold winter.
"WE'RE AT A major turning
point in our program," head coach
Red Berenson said. "This year there
will be better expectations from our
players and from myself. We're
expecting to win."
Strong words from a coach of a
team that finished in eighth place in
a nine-team division last year; a
team that allowed an average of
5.75 goals per game; and a team
that has not been exactly known as
a CCHA powerhouse.
Expect to win?
"We expect to win," said
sophomore center Todd Brost.
"There's a lot of talent coming in
with the freshmen, and things-have
got to turn around eventually."
NOW IS certainly as good a
time as any with the new
transfusion of blood.
"These guys are going to have to
have an impact," said assistant
coach Mark Miller. "And I think
they will. It showed in Friday
night's (intrasquad) game already.
"But it remains to be seen how
quick it happens because it's a big
jump from the juniors. I don't
think it will happen in the first
game and it might not happen until
Christmas. But it is going to.

happen. There's just too much
talent for it not to happen."
AND THIS talent is all over,
spread equally among all of the
positions.
On offense, you have Bryan
Deasley, a big, bruising left
winger, who is projected as a top
draft choice in the National Hockey
League next June;
Mike Moes, a feisty center who
scored 37 goals last year as a
junior; Ryan Pardoski, another left
winger who has been called a "big
Todd Brost;" and Rob Brown, who
was the center on Deasley's line at
St. Michael's. Want more?
On defense, Michigan recruited
Todd Copeland, the 24th pick in the
NHL draft last June; Randy Kwong,
a young, blossoming defenseman;
Alex Roberts, a strong rearguard for
the Wolverines; and Brad Turner, a
third round pick of the Minnesota
North Stars.
BACKING UP the defense is
Warren Sharples, who looked
outstanding . last Friday's
scrimmage, and Glen Neary, a
walk-on goalie who has been
impressive in training camp. These
are the ingredients for a successful
season and an outstanding future.
However, the players are going
to have to do their thing at the
college level now.
"Last year these guys were men
playing with boys," said Berenson.
"This year they are boys playing
with men."
"THE GUYS here are one-step
quicker," said Copeland. "If you
make just one mistake, the guy
will put the puck in the net."
Sharples agreed. "If you make a
mistake at this level, you can mark

it on the scoreboard."
This is where the older players'
experience comes in. They have
guided these boy wonders through
the dog days of training camp, as
they realize the youth movement
can make the difference.

"The older guys are excited about
our strong recruiting class,"
Berenson said. "They are just sick
and tired of losing."
"Our upper class knows about
the winning records that these guys

are bringing with them," said
Miller. "They know that they are
here to help the team and they
know that they can help this team."
As Berenson said, "These kids
have the talent, they have the

character, and I think that they are
going to make the University of,:
Michigan proud of them before they
leave."

But remember, don't forget your
program.

4

.4

4

0

LOW ON EXPERIENCE,

HIGH ON TALENT:
Blue gets new
look in crease

Daily Photo by JOHN MUNSON

I

Goaltender Warren Sharples makes a save in last Friday night's in-
trasquad scrimmage as Brian Deasley (22) waits for the rebound. Both

freshman will be counted on heavily this season.

9

Norton to lead

young defense

By DARREN JASEY
Michigan head coach Red
Berenson strongly believes that a
hockey team wins as a team and
loses as a team. Thus, the
Wolverines' eighth-place Central
Collegiate Hockey Association
finish andl2-26 overall record last
year cannot be heavily attributed to
just one aspect of the hockey team.
Right?
Not exactly.
FOR A TEAM that gave up

Junior Tim Makris, who played
in 29 of Michigan's 38 games last
season, has been declared
academically ineligible for the fall
semester. Furthermore, last year's
freshman hopeful Bob Lindgren left
school last December because of
academic difficulties.
THE FRESHMEN are
expected to battle for the vacant
starting job but should they faulter,
Berenson has 5-7 sophomore Mike
Rossi waiting in the wings.
"This will be an opportunity for
these kids to come in and play,"
said Berenson, finding a bright spot
in the Makris loss. "It might have
been a blessing in disguise or it
might still be a real soft spot on
our team."
If, indeed, the goaltending does
continue to be the team's soft spot,
then Berenson says Makris will be
able to work out with the team
when he regains his eligibility in
January. However, the mood among
the players and coaches is that these
freshmen are talented enough to
help the team immediately. If that
is the case, sorry Makris, Berenson
says he does not intend to keep four
goalies.
MOST OF THE preseason
praise has been heaped upon the
heavily recruited Sharples. The
ninth-round draft choice of the
Calgary Flames showcased some of
his talents in last Friday night's
Blue-White scrimmage. In going all
the way for the Blue squad, he
allowed three goals and turned away
various quality scoring
opportunities.
"He (Sharples) anticipates well,
he reads the plays coming out from
behind the net (and) he senses what
the players are going to do," said
Berenson. "He is not afraid to
challenge the shooter and he handles
the puck pretty well when he does
stop it."
No doubt, Berenson is high on

By DARREN JASEY
The Wolverine defensive unit
has no seniors, one junior, one
sophomore, and four freshmen.
That adds up to two less members
than the average college defensive
unit, and a player that was born in
the same year that man first stepped
on the moon.
The graduation losses of Todd
Carlile, Pat Goff, and Bill Brauer
have opened the door for the new
stock of defensive recruits. Indeed,
the defense will be young and, at
times, overworked, but coach Red
Berenson feels that the new talent
will make fans forget last year's
defensive woes.
"LAST YEAR we had three
seniors on the team defense, but I
feel that even with four freshmen

on defense that we'll irpprove," said
Berenson. "I think we have more
talent on defense this year, but it
will be a matter of time and
experience to see how much we
improve. I don't think that we can
do any worse than we did last year."
Luckily for Berenson, the two
lone returning defenders happened to
be Michigan's best a year ago. Jeff
Norton, a 6-2 junior, was honored
as Michigan's Most Valuable
Player last year and its most
outstanding defenseman in each of
his first two years. His 45 points
(15 goals, 30 assists) last year
ranked third on the team.
"Norton should be a strong force
in the league this year," said
Berenson about his team captain. "I
expect we'll see a lot of leadership
from him."

FOR MICHIGAN to
improve, sophomore Myles
O'Conner has to step in and help
Norton stabilize the defensive unit.
The Calgary, Alberta, native
finished third in scoring among
Michigan defensemen last season,
just one point behind Carlile. Both
he and Norton were third- round
NHL draft choices - Carlile by the
New Jersey Devils, and Norton by
the New York Islanders.
At the top of the list of young
defenders is 6-2, 200-pound Todd
Copeland. The Wellesley, Mass.,
native was thought highly enough
by NHL scouts to be the second-
round selection of the Devils in last
June's draft. Teamed with Copeland
in last week's Blue-White
scrimmage was the smooth skating
Randy Kwong. At 6-0, 170,

Kwong stands as the smallest of the
new defenders. At 17 he is also the
youngest player on the hockey
team.
Joining them will be Brad
Turner, one of Kwong's teammates
from last year's Canadian Junior
Hockey League runner up Calgary
Canucks. Turner (Minnesota North
Stars) is the third third-round NHL
selection on the defensive unit.
FINALLY there is Alex
Roberts, a 6-1, 195-pound
Bloomfield Hills native. Berenson
refers to him as a "stay at home
defenseman," which is the type of
defender that should typify this
Michigan squad.
"We're not a team that will have
our defensemen rushing the puck a
whole lot, although I think you'll
see Norton and O'Conner rush the
puck because they are a little more
experienced," said Berenson.
On the other hand, Berenson
believes that it is also nice to get
some defense from the forwards.

I
I

Neary
promising walk-on

"(LAST YEAR) we were
always outnumbered two-on-one or
three-on- two," said Michigan's
coach. "If you are outnumbered in a
hockey game, you know they are
going to get scoring chances, but if
we have a forward back then that
makes a world of difference."
Berenson plans to bring more
experience and depth to the defense
by occasionally stationing veteran
wingers John Bjorkman and Sean
Baker back on the blue line. The
duo performed effectivly on defense
during the Blue-White scrimmage.

nearly six goals a game and had its
top goaltender ranked 14th in a nine
team conference, it is plain and
simple that the Wolverine
netminders were suspect. Berenson,
himself, even conceded that fact.
"It is something. we really
haven't had the luxury of as far as
we haven't had great goalkeeping,"
said Berenson. "We did a lot of
experimenting last year, even to the
extent of playing one goalie in each
period to try to get some
consistency."
The third-year coach did
acknowledge that goaltenders tend
to receive the brunt of the blame,
because they are in such an
important position.
"H F. CA hecnme th

4

Baker, a junior, saw minimal
action at defense last year, while the
senior Bjorkman saw action in only
seven games bc z, t , of illness.
Among the W {dverines' major
problems on defense last year was
their inability to clear the puck out
of their own zone. Opponents had a'
field day dumping the puck into the
Wolverine end and capitalizing on
Michigan's failure to get the crisp

4

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