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September 09, 1993 - Image 25

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-09-09

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The Michigan Daily/New Student Edition-Sports -Thursday, September 9, 1993 - Page 5

Michigan swimming takes home Big Ten
Wouda leads men to eighth straight conference championship and second place fn
y Brett Johnson level." conference, winning its eighth straight NCAA championship meet with high ended with Michigan winning a
Daily Sports Writer The season went exactly according title.'TheWolverinesonly dropped three expectations. Things almost fell apart tional title in the 800 free relay. It w
There was only one goal for the to plan. events the whole weekend. on the second day of competition, tremendousraceandtheteamofWa
Michigan men's swimming and diving During the dual meet season, the Sophomore Marcel Wouda, com- though. After electing to not swim the Rodney VanTassell, Gunn and Ba
team coming into last season. It was not Wolverines continued their dominance peting in his first Big Ten champion- 200-yard freestyle relay on Thursday gave the team a much needed boo
a Big Ten title. That was already a overopponentsgoing 5-0intheBigTen ship, dominated the competition, win- due to the unlikelihood of making the
foregone conclusion. No, the Wolver- and 7-1 overall. The undefeated Big ning three events en route to being final heats, Michigan needed as many
ines set their goals much higher. The Ten season improved the school's con- named Big Ten Swimmer of the Year. points as it could get in order to defeat 'The best we can hop
teamwaslooking foratopthree,prefer- ference record to 54-3 during Rookie Royce Sharp captured Big Ten Texas. However, the Wolverines dis- for is to challenge Te
ably a top two, finish at the NCAA Urbanchek's 11-year coaching career. Freshman of the Year by winning two qualified their 200 medley relay team for second place.
*championships. The team's only loss came in a tight events and finishing second in another. during the first heat of Friday's compe- Stanford is head and
"The best we can hope for is to battle in Palo Alto to the eventual na- Sophomore Gustavo Borges was also a tition.
challenge Texas for second place," tional champion, Stanford. three event winner, senior Eric "That was just one of those freak shoulders above
Michigan coach Jon Urbanchek said. By the time March came around, Wunderlich won two events and senior mental errors," Urbanchek said. everybody else at the
"Stanford is about head and shoulders Michigan was in top form. The team Brian Gunn took home one victory. Although the team was down, it was NCAA level.''
above everybody else at the NCAA continued its domination in the Big Ten The Wolverines headed into the certainly not out. The Friday session -Jon Urbanc
,"'. . 'w> 't' '. ' ""' . .. ".'ss . Michigan swimming co

ish at NCAAs

was a

began to extend its lead. It was Wouda's
second individual title at the meet. The
team ended up finishing second, beat-'
ing the Longhorns by 70 points. In
addition toWouda's two individual titles
and the relay title, Borges and
Wunderlich also were crowned as indi-
vidual national champions in the 100
freestyle and 200 breaststroke, respec-
Following the Big Ten season, some
Michigan swimmers competed in the
Phillips 66 National Swimming Cham-
pionships in April.
Sharp hit the water in his best event,
the 200-meter backstroke. Sharp, the
American record-holder in the 200 back,
had finished third in the equivalentyard's
eventatthe BigTen meet. Itwas-hisfirst
meters swim since the summer he com-
peted in the Barcelona Olympics, and
he was victorius.
Fellow Olympian Eric Namesnik
also swam in his best event, the -400
IM -- and came home with a victory.

After Friday's session, the Wolver-
ines held a slight eight-point edge on
Texas for second place, and they were
just not going to let that lead go.
In the firsteventon Saturday, Wouda
won the 1,650 freestyle, and Michigan

Michigan sophomore Marcel Wouda swims freestyle at Michigan State. Wouda was named
conference championship meet.


Big Ten Swimmer of the Year in winning three events at the

Women finish a surprising fifth nationally after taking Big Ten

by Charlie Breitrose
Daily Sports Writer
Slow and steady - that's how the
tortoise won its famed race with the
hare, and that was also how the Michi-
gap women's swimming and diving
team achieveditshighest finish in school
history at the NCAA championships.
The Wolverines arrived in Minne-
apolis, coming off their seventh con-
Osecutive Big Ten championship, pre-
dicted by most to finish tenth at the
NCAA meet. However, Michigan out-
distanced almost everyone's expecta-
tions with the team's fifth place finish.
Lara Hooiveld and Mindy Gehrs
had much to do with the Wolverines'
impressive finish. Hooiveld, who will
enter her junior season this fall, won
both the 100and200yard breaststrokes,
Stting theU.S.OpenandNCAArecord

in the 100. Gehrs, a 1993 graduate,
triumphed in the 400 individual med-
The divers also made a valuable
contribution at the NCAAs. Junior
Cinamon Woods took second in the 10
meter platform event.
All this did not look likely after the
Wolverines' sluggish start. Coach Jim
Richardson seemingly was the only
person who would dare to predict the
top five finish after his team dropped
dual meets to Tennessee and Penn State
in November.
Things started to turn around at the
beginning of December. Michigan won
the Speedo Collegiate Cup, far outdis-
tancing second-place Iowa. In the com-
petition,Michigan qualified three swim-
mers for the NCAA meet, thus taking
the pressure off and starting them on the

road to success.
ButinRichardson's opinion, thekey
to the Wolverinesperformance in March
was the training trip to Hawaii during
winter break. Richardson called it "the
best two weeks of training we've ever

Thne enture
team endured
grueling work-
outs two times a
day, and it paid
off as the Wol-
verines won the

conference meet by pounding North-
western, who was expected to give the
Wolverines a run fortheir money in the
title chase.
It was all down hill from there. Michi-
gan glided through the remainder of its
dual meet schedule in preparation for
Big Tens.
Northwestern came to Ann Arbor
for the Big Ten meet, and showed people
why many coaches had picked them to
win the conference. The Wildcats be-
gan strong, led by their sprint freestylers,
and gave the Wolverines a run for their
Michigan's depth in thebreaststroke,
backstroke, IM's and diving was too
much for Northwestern. Michigan won
10 events and current junior Alecia
Humphrey was named Swimmer of the

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The hard work also provided divi-
dends when the team returned to the
mainland. Michigan gave the confer-
ence a taste of what to expect at the



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