The Michigan Daily/New Student Edition - Thursday, September 7, 1989 - Page 5
'M' teams gain attention as events grow more popular
In the office of Michigan wrest-
ling coach Dale Bahr is a poster with
three caricatures. The inscription
tells a tale of Michigan's 1988-89
It says: "the three brothers:
Shoulda, coulda, and Woulda Been."
Normally, a record-setting 20-2
season wouldn't suggest unfulfilled
promise, but the 1988-89 Wolverine
wrestling team is an exception.
Michigan entered the season with
four All-Americans - 134-pounder
John Fisher, 142-pounder Larry
Gotcher, 158-pounder Joe Pantaleo,
and 167-pounder Mike Amine - and
the most returning NCAA champ-
ionship points in the country.
"Since 1973 we've been shooting
for the Big Ten title and this year we
have an excellent chance to do it,"
Bahr said at the beginning of the
Added Gotcher: "You know we
have an excellent chance to win the
national title and you know that
doesn't happen every year."
Indeed it doesn't, and it didn't
happen last year either. The Wol-
verines had to settle for a fifth place
finish in the NCAA. Not bad, but
not what Michigan was looking for.
Neither was a third place finish in
the Big Ten championship meet
behind Iowa, which won its 16th
straight, and Minnesota.
There were many successes for
Michigan in the 1988-89 season.
The squad's 20 dual meet victories
surpasses the 1984-85's team record
of 17. Michigan also became the
first Big Ten team to defeat a Dan
Gable-coached Iowa squad as
Michigan won 23-17. The victory
snapped a 99 match Hawkeye string.
At the nationals, Michigan distin-
guished itself again. Pantaleo took
second for the second year in a row,
and Gotcher took fourth, the results
for Fisher and Mike Amine were
Fisher, a four-time All-American,
wanted to close his brilliant career
out with a national title. Instead, he
took fourth. Mike Amine, who was
national runner-up in 1988, did not
place in the top eight to qualify for
"I think Coach Bahr is disap-
pointed, but he's more disappointed
that we (as individuals) didn't meet
our goals," Amine said.
-Steven A. Cohen
Gotcher is driven on and off the mat
By Steven A. Cohen
Daily Sports Writer
As the Michigan wrestling team prepared to
face Iowa last season, many wrestlers were
confident that the Wolverines would defeat the
Hawkeyes and snap their 99 match conference
But while many wrestlers accorded the
Hawkeyes the expected deterrence that a team
which has won 15 consecutive conference titles
and 9 of the last 11 national titles usually
receives, one was particularly forthright.
"I don't think it will be close," 142-pounder
Larry Gotcher said.
Gotcher's six-point disqualification of Hawk-
eye Eric Pierson helped Michigan defeat Iowa,
23-17. His prediction wasn't an isolated bout of
confidence, but merely the verbal expression of
an intensely competitive mindset.
Gotcher is one of those people who gives his
all to anything he does. A junior national champ-
ion in high school, Gotcher was also excellent
student. After going to the University of Mont-
ana for a year, Gotcher transferred to Michigan
after Montana dropped its program. Since that
time, Gotcher has maintained a 3.4 average in the
business school and has been named All-
American twice. In 1989, Larry was the Big Ten
"He's business oriented," grad assistant Will
Waters said of Gotcher. "He comes to practice in
a suit and tie but when he's on the mat, he gets
all bruised up. We call him 'Psycho'."
Though his strong comments may sometimes
seem irrational, the only thing deranged about
Gotcher may be his work habits. Gotcher is a
picture of discipline. To maintain his wrestling
weight of 142 pounds, he must consistently
follow a structured diet. This allows Gotcher to
weigh in at less then 4% body fat
And while he likes to study hard, he won't
detract from his social life. After celebrating
Michigan's historic victory over Iowa with his
teammates into the wee hours in the morning,
Gotcher alone was awake on the bus ride home,
pouring over an accounting textbook.
"Gotcher is a money man," Michigan coach
Dale Bahr said. "When the chips are down it al-
ways seems that Larry is picking up the money."
His attitude, perhaps more than talent, has
contributed to his success. Gotcher's creed is:
always be wary of an opponent, but never too
respectful, never sell yourself short, and do
"whatever it takes."
After Ohio State wrestler Kenny Ramsey
upset Gotcher at last year's Big Ten Champion-
ships, Gotcher said "he'll never beat me again be-
cause I won't let him."
Gotcher defeated him handily the next time
Before Michigan faced Indiana in 1989,
someone warned Gotcher about his Hoosier
counterpart, Adam Caldwell : "You know Larry,
you better watch out, this kid Caldwell is 12-1."
Without much thought, Gotcher cooly
responded: "Guess how he got that one loss?"
And guess who feels he'll finish up his career
with a national championship in 1990. U
Wolverine wrestler Larry Gotcher, one of the top returning 142-pound
wrestlers in the country, carries his intensity with him into all arenas,
whether he is competing on the mat or in the classroom.
By Adam Benson
Daily Sports Editor
Michigan women's basketball coach Bud VanDeWege couldn't find
quite the right mix for his team at the beginning of the season, which
probably was a big reason why the Wolverines got of to an 0-8 start in
the Big Ten.
But fortunes changed when VanDeWege moved center Joan Rieger to
power forward and inserted center Val Hall into the starting lineup. This
move allowed small forward Tanya Powell to leave the middle, and make
tter use of her outstanding perimeter game. The improvement was clear,
and Michigan put together a solid 5-5 finish.
"We encountered somethings in our program that we had not anti-
cipated," said VanDeWege. "I think what happened down the stretch,
showed that we had recovered. If the season had gone on two or three
weeks, that improvement would have continued."
The coach will be looking for continued improvement from Powell,
who the team's Outstanding Defensive Player and the Most Valuable
Player last season, averaging 11.7 points per game and 8.1 rebounds.
In the backcourt, Tempie Brown and Carol Szczechowski will return as
*the starters. Although both players lost their starting jobs for periods last
season, both guards have the ability to take over a game. Brown, a pre-
season All-Big Ten selection last season, lead the team in scoring,
averaging 13 points per game, and steals with 47.
While Brown is smooth, Szczechowski is scrappy. After playing
forward her first year at Michigan, Szczechowski made a nice transition to
the point guard position, as her team-leading 120 assists would indicate.
Besides returning eight of their top nine players from last season, the
team also has a solid group of incoming first-year players. The most
notalbe new arrival, Center Patricia Andrews, finished third in the Illinois
Hall rebounds back
from hoops burnout
By Adam Benson
Daily Sports Editor
Not long ago, Val Hall began a career as a model. She enjoyed this
new life, and it was a welcome change from her past, which was largely
composed of studying engineering and playing basketball at Michigan.
Hall, tired of basketball, also suffered a frustrating knee injury in 1986
that made the game all the more difficult to play. In 1987, burned out, she
left the game thinking that her basketballdays were over.
"In that year, I really grew up a lot," Hall said. "For a while, I didn't
think I'd be able to comeback. After being away from it my view of bas-
ketball changed, I began to really want it. But I had to want to comeback
on my own, and not just wanting it because others around me wanted me.
to do it."
Few felt the Hall's 1988 return would be able to have an impact on the
Michigan program, but coach Bud VanDeWege hoped that this one-time
highly recruited high school star would could provide some needed help at
the center position.
What VanDeWege got was a physical, aggressive center who used her
6'3" frame to become a defensive presence for the Wolverines. Although
she did not enter the lineup until mid-season, Hall became a vital compo-
nent in the Michigan plan. No where was her importance more evident
than in Michigan's first Big Ten win against Illinois. Hall scored 13
points, and neutralized Illinois' inside game with her tough play.
"You don't try to be dirty, but you go to establish your position," Hall
said after the Illinois win. "I got pushed out once and then I said 'no way'.
This is my spot, and my spot on my court."
Hall and VanDeWege hope that she can continue her strong play next:
season. "The number one thing Valerie has to be concerned about this
year is, staying as hungry," VanDeWege said. "The attitude that took her.
from being out of the program to being a big part of it was her hunger. I
don't want her to say now 'I'm back' and to become relaxed and satisfied.
"She can be the center that people are worried about playing against." U
Miss Basketball balloting, and led her
The Michigan women's swim-
ming team set 12 school records and
five hig Ten records this year. The
squad also set a record for con-
secutive dual meet victories. But the
primary goal of the team was to
perform well in their post-season
This was taken care of when the
Wolverines won the Big Ten
*Championship and placed sixth at
the the NCAA tournament.
"I'm very pleased with our
season," said Wolverine coach Jim
Richardson. "We were able to finish
in the top ten and no other northern
school has been in the top ten once.
We've done it three years in a row."
Early in the season, however,
The Michigan men's swimming
eam completed its best season since
1966 last year, successfully defending
its Big Ten crown for the third
straight time and placing third at the
In addition, head coach Jon Urban-
chek extended his dual-meet winning
streak to 45 before losing to Indiana
The Wolverines (10-1 overall in
1988-89, 5-1 in the Big Ten) began
team to the state final.
S- ----..-----$-- ________
Michigan center Val Hall has had to overcome adversity, but since her
return she has won a spot in the lineup and the respect of her team.
Michigan did not resemble a top
national team. The Wolverines fin-
ished third in the Michigan Invit-
ational in December and sixth in
January's Longhorn Invitational.
"Our team didn't come together
until Big Tens, but at Big Tens we
did an amazing job of coming
together," said Ann Colloton, who
became Michigan's first ever na-
tional champion last season, win-
ning the 200 breaststroke. "We've
talked about the problems early in
the season and how to have a better
But Michigan's training schedule,
which aimed at having the team peak
later in the season, resulted in a 7-0
regular season record (5-0 Big Ten).
The team also broke the school's
record for consecutive dual meet
victories with 30.
With most of the Wolverines' top
swimmers returning, this year's
squad has the potential to exceed last
season's feats. Michigan will be led
by experienced seniors Colloton,
Gwen DeMaat and Stefanie Liebner.
"Our goal is to be in the top four
at NCAAs and after this year we
know what to do," Colloton said.
"Just looking back at last year, we
know the things that we need to
change and we want to do better."
Colloton returns to defend her.
national championship, while All-
Americans DeMaat and Liebner give
the team championship caliber talent
in the backstroke, freestyle and in-
dividual medley events.
Michigan should also be bolstered
by the return of sophomores Jennifer
Love, Jennifer Jackson and Michelle
After oeginning me year under a
cloud of injuries, the Michigan
men's tennis team bounced back, but
not far enough, finishing second in
the Big Ten to rival Minnesota.
Three Michigan players earned
All-Big Ten recognition: Malivai
Washington, David Kass, and Dan
Goldberg. In addition, Washington
was named Big Ten Player-of-the-
Year, Goldberg was awarded Sports-
man-of-the-Year, and Coach Brian
Eisner earned Coach-of-the-Year
At press time the team was still
hoping to receive an at large birth in
the national championships.
Three of Michigan's (15-10 over-
all, 11-1 in the Big Ten) top singles
players missed action due to injuries
this season. Washington, the top-
ranked player in the country, has had
problems with both his back and
ankle. Third singles player David
Kass had to sit out two matches
with an aggravated shoulder and
After cutting the ribbon on their
brand new, state-of-the-art facility,
the Donald B. Canham Natatorium,
Michigan quickly rose to 5-0,
dominating inferior midwestern
teams along the way. Their first real
dual meets and continued to stress
only one thing - winning the na-
tional crown. "Instead of concen-
trating on winning dual meets," he
said, "the most important thing is to
concentrate on NCAA's."
A ftC . .;.... .,., T-.- 4
is just a road to NCAA's," Urban-
chek said, "that's our goal."
By the time the dust had settled
on the regular season, 15 Wolverines
had made NCAA cuts and were off to
Michigan started off strong and
held on to third place, just edging out
UCLA, 315-313.5. Junior Brent
Lang was crowned the 50-yard
freestyle champ and sophomore Mike
Barrowman took home the 200-
before a match against Indiana,
"we're going to need them."
With restored health, the pieces
began falling into place. Michigan
defeated Indiana, 5-4, and Ohio State,
9-0, on the same weekend before
travelling to Michigan State, where
they defeated the Spartans. "This was-