The Michigan Daily- Friday, January 11,1992 Page 11
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by Ken Sugiura
Daily Hockey Writer
There was a time when a Mich-
igan hockey series with Illinois-
Chicago (UIC) meant a pair of easy
Wolverine victories. Before the
season began, they (15-3-3 overall,
9-3-3 in the CCHA) owned a nine-
game winning streak against UIC,
including 9-2 and 13-4 bombings of
the Flames (6-9-3 in the CCHA and
However, the balance of power
changed Nov. 22-23.
"We didn't at all expect them to
do as well as they did," Michigan's
Mark Ouimet said. "They almost
beat us, they probably should have
beat us in the second game there, so
we were lucky to get out of there
with a couple of games."
In the first game, Ouimet netted
the game-winner at 19:57 of the
third period to steal a 5-4 victory.
The following night, UIC out-
played the then-No. 1 Wolverines,
but wound up with a 3-3 tie.
"We were surprised," Ouimet
This weekend, at the UIC
Pavilion, the games will be on the
Flames' terms. Since the last Mich-
igan series, UIC is 4-0-1 at home,
with a victory over No. 4 Lake
Superior St. and a sweep of upstart
With Michigan's conference road
mark at 3-3-1, and the team in the
thick of the conference title chase,
there won't be much margin for
"surprise." The Flames caught
Michigan off guard with pesky
forechecking in Ann Arbor, and
Wolverine coach Red Berenson
foresees more of the same.
"They'll start coming at us hard
and hopefully we'll be able to
handle it," he said.
UIC marks the Wolverines' first
two-game road trip since Lake
Superior. Michigan dropped both in
the Soo, a 3-2 overtime loss and a 10-
0 stomping. A solid showing here
would go a long way to solidify the
No. 3 Wolverines' legitimacy
among hockey's elite.
"We haven't established that we
deserve our top ranking yet," de-
fenseman Doug Evans said. "A
major way to establish that is to go
in there this weekend and outwork
them in their building."
Is a sweep possible?
"We have the manpower to do it.
It's basically just if we show up to
play for six periods," Evans con-
tinued. "If we do, then we should do
Michigan failed to do so last
weekend in a home-and-home set
with Notre Dame. While the
Wolverines emerged with a 4-3, 8-5
sweep, the Irish made the weekend a
bit more uncomfortable than
expected. Berenson's disenchant-
ment with his Wolverines' play
Friday in Notre Dame behooved him
to call a second-period timeout to
berate his club.
"It was like, 'This is an
embarrassment to Michigan hockey
to come down to Notre Dame and
play like this,' and he let us know
that," goalie Steve Shields recalled.
UIC netminder Jon Hillebrandt
has been anything but an embar-
rassment for the Flames. The frosh
sensation ranks second in saves and
minutes in the CCHA, and has made
all 18 starts for UIC.
"He's probably been the
difference in our season. It's tough
for us to win if he doesn't play
well," UIC coach Larry Pedrie said.
Another advantage Pedrie will
utilize is his familiarity with the
Wolverines. He served three years as
an assistant under Berenson.
Forward Cam Stewart pushes the puck up the ice against Notre Dame
last weekend. The 'M' icers swept the home-and-home series.
by Andy Stabile
Daily Sports Writer
Ready or not, tomorrow in
Pittsburgh, the University of
Michigan women's gymnastics team
kicks off its 1992 season.
Pitt and West Virginia will
welcome Wolverine coach Bev Fry
into her third season. Fry's team is
high on expectation and has enough
talent to win the Big Ten Champi-
onship in March. Unfortunately, her
team has enough injuries to open a
Of the team's five much-heralded
rookie gymnasts, only one, Beth
Wymer, will be able to compete in
the season opener.
"We've had some unexpected in-
juries," Fry said. "There's some key
people that we brought in as fresh-
men that we were hoping would be
able to make a real immediate im-
pact in the program, and now for the
first meet we've only got one of
them in the lineup."
Injuries aside, Fry feels the team
is ready to attack the season.
"The rest of the girls have really
risen to the occasion. Things have
gone really well. Even though we
don't have everybody that we were
hoping to have in the lineup, we're
still stronger now than we were at
the end of last year," she said.
At the end of last year, the
Wolverines were strong enough to
finish third in the Big Ten. How-
ever, for tomorrow, Michigan will
rely on last year's standouts. Junior
Ali Winski and last season's Big
Ten Conference 1991 all-around co-
champion sophomore Wendy Wilk-
inson will lead the Wolverine
charge in Pittsburgh.
"Their spirits are really good,"
Fry said. "As far as going into the
first meet, I think we are better pre-
pared for this meet than we have
been than in the two seasons that
I've been here. The kids are confident
about doing their routines. I'm sure
we're going to take our falls. We're
still going to have first meet jitters,
but I'm sure that we're going to do
by Todd Schoe
As the Michigan men's gymnas-
tics team takes its 0-1 record to the
Windy City Invitational tomorrow,
it will probably need to overcome
inexperience and injuries for a good
The Wolverines will try to re-
bound from their disappointing sea-
son opener against Minnesota.
Tomorrow, Michigan will be
competing against nine other teams.
Despite the intense competition,
Darden remains fairly confident.
"Although we are unproven, if
we perform up to expectations, we
could very well finish in the top
half," he predicted.
At least four sophomores and
four rookies will attend the meet at
Illinois-Chicago. Frosh sensation
Brian Winkler will be among them.
Winkler finished with the sixth
highest all-around score in the Big
Ten last weekend.
Michigan will be shorthanded by
the absences of Royce Toni (back
spasms) and Rich Dopp (stiff neck).
The Wolverines will also miss
senior Jim Round for the next
couple of weeks with a broken hand
"Fortunately we have a lot of
depth in the number of athletes
training in the gym and in the talent
of each individual," Darden said.
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