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The Michigan Daily
Thursday, April 2, 1992
Softball opens at
by Meg Beison
Daily Sports Writer
The Wolverine softball players will be in for
something new Friday. Not only will they finally play at
home, they will christen Varsity Diamond's new
The home opener will commence the Big Ten season
Friday, when Michigan hosts conference foe
Northwestern. The Wolverines will face the Wildcats in
doubleheaders Friday (3 p.m.) and Saturday (1 p.m.).
Michigan was 12-12 in the preseason, and coach
Carol Hutchins believes her team is ready to face the
"We've had a lot of ups and downs," Hutchins said.
"But we're beginning to play as a team."
The Wolverines finished third in the conference last
year, posting a 15-9 record. Hutchins believes her team
has the talent to finish strong again this year, but she is
aware that anything can happen in the Big Ten.
"Every year it's a dogfight," Hutchins said. "We
have to play one game at a time. We need to play our
game regardless of who we play."
Since the beginning of the season, Hutchins has
stressed the importance of a dominating pitching staff
with the ability to shut out the opposition. Hutchins saw
much improved pitching at the National Invitational
Softball Tournament last weekend, where they made it
to the consolation final before losing.
Junior pitcher Kelly Forbis leads Michigan into the
Big Ten season sporting a 4-4 record and a 2.09 ERA.
Also expected to help carry the pitching load is rookie
Kelly Kovach who has spun three shutouts enroute to a
Offensively, junior left fielder Patti Benedict leads
the Wolverines with a .333 average including eight
extra-base hits. Senior co-captain Stacey Heams leads
the team in RBIs with 12 and sophomore shortstop
Mary Campana has contributed to Michigan's attack
with a .311 average.
Michigan wins, 5-4,
streak reaches five
by Ryan Herrington
Daily Baseball Writer
It might not be pretty, but the
Michigan baseball team is on a roll.
After a victory against Eastern
Michigan in Tuesday's home
opener, the Wolverines held on to
defeat Toledo, 5-4, in a seven-inning
game yesterday at Ray Fisher
Stadium, extending their current
winning streak to five.
The Wolverines (3-1 Big Ten, 8-
13 overall) had a comfortable three-
run lead heading into the final inning
with ace reliever Todd Marion on
the mound. But Michigan would
make the game a little more interest-
ing. After striking out the first batter,
Marion gave up a double and a sin-
gle to Toledo's bottom two hitters.
With runners on second and
third, Trent Clark took a Marion' de-
livery deep to left field, hitting the
top of the fence and just missing a
home run. The ball caromed off the
wall for a double, scoring a run to
make the score 5-3.
The Wolverines proceeded to get
the second out of the inning on a
fielder's choice but could not put the
Rockets away. A single by Mike
Cambridge scored another run and
left runners on first and third before
Marion struck out Troy Keegan for
the game's final out. Heath Murray
got the victory, his second, for
"The fact that we won the base-
ball game is what is important,"
Michigan coach Bill Freehan said.
"We've started to play better against
teams with the same kind of climatic
perspective that we have. We've
played a pretty tough schedule com-
pared to some of the Big Ten teams.
I think we'll continue to improve."
Despite the absence of some
starters from the Wolverines' lineup,
and the use of five different pitchers,
Michigan jumped out to an early 1-0
lead in the second inning when re-
serve first baseman Chad Chapman
singled and scored on catcher Scott
Niemiec's one-out double to right
Niemiec's hot bat continued to
smolder in the fourth inning when
the rookie drove in another run with
a two-out triple to center field. He
would score on a Matt Copp single,
which pushed the Michigan lead to
"I felt real comfortable today,"
Niemiec said. "I was seeing the ball
Next on the schedule for the
Wolverines is a pair of Big Ten dou-
bleheaders against Northwestern this
weekend. As for the Wolverines,
their outlook may be as bright as its
been all year.
"We're a lot more confident
now," Niemiec said. "The team's
coming together. There's a lot more
Michigan's Heath Murray collected his second victory in the 5-4 win over Toledo yesterday.
Continued from page 1
seed. The Badgers defeated the No. 2
and No. 3 seeds in the East, New
Hampshire and St. Lawrence, by
identical 4-2 scores last weekend in
The defending national champion
Wildcats took their best shot at
knocking off the top-seeded
Wolverines by taking a 6-3 lead be-
fore succumbing to the Wolverines,
as well as their own fatigue.
Emotion had a heavy hand in the
comeback, and the possible edge
troubles Wisconsin coach Jeff Sauer.
"They have a real plus in the win
last week," Sauer said. "We had -
control of both of our games and
we'll be ready to go out and play
hard. But I think Michigan will
have a small psychological edge"
The four-day layoff between
games and the excitement of being
in the Final Four caused Berenson to
discount any momentum.
"We're not a team rolling into
Albany, but we're not limping ei-
ther," Berenson said. "We are in the
position we want to be in and now
we have to prove we can win. It's
great to say you want to win it all,
but now we have to prove it in what
we hope will be a two-game series."
The Badgers resemble Lake
Superior, the only team with a win-
ning record against the Wolverines
Like the Lakers, Wisconsin starts
an all-American, Hobey Baker
candidate at goalie - Duane
"He plays big in every game and
his numbers have certainly shown
that this season," St. Lawrence
coach Joe Marsh said. "He is defi-
nitely one of the top goaltenders in
Wisconsin features a balanced at-
tack with four front lines and six
defensemen - another LSSU-type
trait. However, the Badgers lack a
prolific scorer. Jason Zent,
Wisconsin's leading conference
scorer, was 25th on the WCHA list.
Season winds down for
by Adam Miller
Daily Sports Writer
Is there justice in the world?
Peace on earth and goodwill to men?
The Michigan men's tennis team
(3-1 Big Ten, 3-8 overall) may not
find the answers to these eternal
ponderings this weekend, but the
Wolverines' prayers may be an-
swered in matches Saturday at Ohio
State and Sunday at Indiana.
The match against the Buckeyes
(1-2, 7-8) should spell R-E-L-I-E-F,
if not R-E-L-I-G-I-O-N, for
Michigan. Ohio State, like
Michigan, is a top-heavy team.
"It's obvious that their No. 1
(Gabor Koves) is much better than
the rest of their team," Dan Brakus,
Michigan's No. 2 singles player
Koves' record stands at 2-1 in the
Big Ten, 16-6 overall, earning him
the No. 5 spot in the conference.
But beating the Hoosiers in
Bloomington may require a feat
greater than walking on water. The
No. 19 Hoosiers (2-1, 7-6) should
handle the Wolverines, although
Indiana's greatest weakness is at the
top. No. 1 singles Nigel Russel is 0-
"That may be," Brakus said, "but
they're a very solid team all the way
down the line."
Brakus is right. No. 2 singles
Chris Decker stands 2-1, 8-1 at his
position. No. 3 David Russel is 2-1,
FoR MoRE I
SPORTS, SEE PAGE 8
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