Page 4-The Michigan Daily/New Student Edition-Sports -Thursday, September 9, 1993
''',k ..., ,WOMEN'S GYMNASTICS:
by Jon Altshul
Daily Sports Writer
It was a season to remember.
Earning its second consecutive Big Ten championship en
route to an unprecedented ninth place finish at the NCAAs,
the Michigan women's gymnastics team lived up to all
expectations during the 1992-93 campaign.
Led by two-time Big Ten champion and All-American
Beth Wymer, the squad finished the regular season with a
national ranking of 11 and a nearly impeccable 24-3 record.
Still, better results remained on the horizon.
'We set goals at the beginning of each season. (These
goals) have progressed every year," senior captain JulieJ
Hofmeister explained. The Wolverines' expectations this
year, however, were no small task: defend their Big Ten title
and earn an at-large bid for the NCAAs.
The team left no doubt as to its ability to live up to its pre-
"After the third home meet," Hofmeister elaborated,
"things really came together. We scored a 193, breaking the
school record for the first time. We knew then that we could
accomplish all our goals."
This "coming together" included a surprise sweep of two
traditionally pre-eminent Utah schools, BYU and Utah State.
At the Big Ten Championships in March, it was business
as usual. The team triumphed, narrowly defeating a tough
Penn State squad by half a point. Catalyzed by superlativel
efforts from Wymer, freshman Wendy Marshall and sopho-
more Li Li Leung, the team reaffirmed its chokehold on the
Individually, Wymer, a sophomore, also successfully
defended her all-around title, nailing a 9.925 on the balance
beam and a 9.975 on the uneven bars.
Two weeks later, the team ventured to Baton Rouge, La.,1
for the regional qualifying meet for the NCAA Champion-
ture Big Ten
ships. The event had been the Wolverines' nemesis in years
past-never beforehad aMichigan teammanaged toqualify
for the big show.
This year, however, proved tobe something ofan anomaly.,
The shackles were finally off, and with a respectable fourth
place finish, the team qualified for the vaunted NCAA
The Michigan team entered the tourney with realistic,
expectations. Theywere thenewkids on the block, up against
'We have always tried to set malistic, attainable goals for
ourselves, and work on meeting those goals," coach Bev,
Plocki stated before the meet. "If we made it to the 'Super
Six,' I would be the happiest person alive."
'After the third home meet, things
really came together. We knew then
that we could accomplish our goals.'
The team, however, did not advance that far, but still
managed to capture ninth place overall. For her part, Wymer
helped put the Great Lakes State firmly on the gymnastics
map with another sensational meet. In addition to earning
All-American honors for the second consecutive year with
an eighth-place finish in the all-around, she also grabbed a
co-national championship on the uneven bars.
Second team All-American honors went to Marshall and
sophomore Kelly Carfora on the vault, freshman Diana
Ranelli on the floor exercises and freshman TinaMiranda on
the uneven bars.
Michigan's Debbie Geiger competes in the floor exercise against Ohio State at Cliff Keen Arena. The women's
gymnastics squad won its second consecutive Big Ten championship in 1993.
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Injuries hamper gymnasts' performances
Daily Sports Writer
The 1992-93 season will beremem-
bered as a year of frustration for the
Michigan men's gymnastics team.
Not only did it find out that its pro-
gram would lose varsity status, but also,
due to a rash of injuries, it finished fifth
out of seven teams in the Big Ten and
failed to qualify for NCAA team
regionals for the first time in five years.
Early season injuries kept junior
Royce Toni - a top performer as a
freshman but plagued by injuries ever
since - and floor exercise specialists
sophomore Brian Winkler and junior
Jorge Camacho out of the lineup until
late in the season.
As a result, the Wolverines were
forced to rely on a less-experienced
team for most of the season, and missed
qualifying for the NCAA East Regional,
which featured a reduced field of six
teams instead of eight this season. -
'We have not had the chance to put
a healthy team on the floor to get those
three scores we need forregionals, which
is unfortunate," coach Bob Darden said
after losing to Michigan State. State
won, 277.5-270.75, effectively ending
any hopes the Wolverines had at their
fifth consecutive regional bid.
"With the illness, injuriesandrecov-
ering injuries, it's real frustrating,"
Darden said. "It's probably even more
so for the athletes."
Late in the season, however, Winkler,
Toni and Camacho returned in time to
compete in the Big Ten Champion-
ships. The veterans' return boosted the
Wolverines' confidence heading into
"If all goes according to plan and
well and we're latched on to our consis-
tent performance, I'm predicting a real
high finish," Darden said heading into
the March 20 and 21 event.
'We have the talentlevel to compete
with anyone, we just have to have the
consistency tohitevery event," Winkler
said. "If we do that we're Big Ten
The Wolverines' performanceinBig
Tens earned them a fifth-place finish
with a score of 275.05. Ohio State won
the meet with 283.825, followed by
Minnesota (282.15). While Michigan
had high expectations heading into the
meet, they were not disappointed with
'Were really happy with the way it
ended up," Seth Rubin said. "Westarted
rough on the high bars, but we pulled
'We stayed tough mentally and kept
ourheads in the game," Rich Dopp said.
came away strong."
After the Big Ten season, three gym-
nasts qualified for the NCAA Champi
onships. Freshman Kris Klinger fin-
ished 24th on the high-bar with a 9.3,
Raul Molina placed 16th in the floor
exercise with a 9.55, and Dopp regis-
tered a 9.1 on the high bar, placing hin
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