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February 14, 1994 - Image 18

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-02-14

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6 - The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday, February 14, 1994

Wolverines shatter team record*
Michigan scores 195.35 against Broncos, Wildcats

Dominating. Exhilarating.
These are just a few of many ad-
jectives that can be used to describe
the performance of the No. 7 Michi-
gan women's gymnastics team this
weekend as it cruised to victory over
Western Michigan on Friday night
and Kentucky yesterday.
Friday, Michigan scored a team-
best 195.35 including 49.20 in the
vault, 48.9 in the bars, 48.45 on the
beam, and a 48.80 on the floor.
Western earned a respectable
187.25 and was lead by Alisa Rago
and Christine Evans. Rago captured
fifth in the all around with a 37.8
while Evans took sixth with a 37.3.
Highlighting the Michigan per-
formance was a pair of 10's regis-
tered by all around winner Beth
Wymer in the uneven and floor exer-
cises on her way to a personal best of
39.825. The 10 in the floor exercise
was the first ever for a Michigan gym-
nast, and was received by the crowd
with a rousing ovation.
"Today was just my day," Wymer
said. "I never in my wildest dreams
thought I could score this high. I don't
know if I'll ever do as well as I did

Not to be overlooked on Friday
were the tremendous performances
of the rest of the team. Debbie Berman,
Kelly Carfora, Andrea McDonald and
Wendy Marshall all turned in efforts
which were instrumental in the team's
Carfora's all around score of
38.950 was a personal best and good
enough for second place.
"We were great. I'm really ex-
cited that we didn't count any falls,"
Carfora said. "I'm really happy I'm
finally starting to get my consistency
Berman captured third with a 38.5,
while the freshman McDonald got
fourth with a 38. Marshall registered
a 9.9 on the vault which tied her with
Wymer for the meet's best score.
Yesterday, having had little time
to enjoy their Friday victory, the team
had the tough task of facing the Ken-
tucky Wildcats. The Wolverines
turned in yet another stellar perfor-
mance by tying the Friday's team
record with a 195.35. Kentucky
proved to be a worthy foe by scoring
a 192.275.
The meet looked to be a duel be-
tween last year's all around champion
from Kentucky, Jenny Hansen, and
this year's No. I gymnast Beth

The challenge of facing Hansen
was one of which Wymer was well
aware, but beating her was not where
she wanted to focus her energy.
"I knew that she was the forme
champion," Wymer said. "I figur
that trying to beat her (Hansen) was
not what I was here for. I'm here to
work with the team and get the best
team score."
Hansen was also aware of the chal-
lenge, but tried not to let the thought
of facing Wymerdistract her from her
own routines.
"It was really tough," Hansen said.
"I tried not to watch her because i@
makes memore nervous. She's atough
competitor, and she looked really
In a dramatic moment earlier in
the meet, both Wymer and Hansen
simultaneously turned in flawless
performances while performing in the
vault and uneven bars. With Hansen's
score of 10 in the vault being flashed
by the judges, the crowd began t.
chant "Ten, ten, ten" in hopes of th
same honor being awarded to Wymer
on the bars.
The 10 was given to Wymer to the
great appreciation from the crowd,
and was flashed later once again when
Wymer turned in an unbelievable per-

Kelly Carfora helped Michigan establish its new team record this weekend with a personal all-around best.

Blue tumblers send
Nittany Lions packing

That's what a Wolverine is sup-
posed to be. And with a crowd con-
sisting of many Penn State alumni,
and a key member out, the No. 4
Michigan men's gymnastics team
lived up to its name.
On Saturday night, the Wolver-
ines fought the full fifteen rounds in
route to a 278.85-277.05 victory over
the No. 3 Nittany Lions at Cliff Keen
Arena. Led by sophomore Bob Young
who took second in the all-around
competition with a 53.70, Michigan
won five of the six events.
"Rings did a phenomenal job,"
coach Bob Darden said. "On vault,
wedidreal well. Ourdifficulty wasn't
up quite as high as we wanted, but we
were able to maintain the lead that we
developed on rings."
The Wolverine squad was without
the services of all-arounder Rich
Dopp, and that made its task of win-
ning all the more difficult. But nu-
merous individuals stepped up, and
Darden was pleased with what he
"Kris Klinger did a phenomenal
job," Darden said. "He came up on
floor, and did a real good job there in
setting the frame of mind for the rest
of the squad.
."Seth Rubin had a tough time on
pommel horse, but was able to suck it
in, tough it out and come back strong
on rings," Darden continued. "He
came back on parallel bar and did
very well, and on high bar (9.65) was
"I'm really glad we didn't dwell
on the fact that Rich wasn't in the
meet," junior Raul Molina said. "He
contributes a hell of a lot to our pro-
gram and to every meet, but tonight it
didn't matter who was on the floor. If
you were part of that lineup, you were
going to hit."

One person who especially en-
joyed the team's effort was coaching
legend Newt Loken, who guided the
Wolverines to 12 Big Ten champion-
ships and two national titles in his
illustrious 36-year career.
"It was a great meet," Loken
said. "I've seen hard work and daily
effort in the practice gym, and
they've been working really hard.
They really nailed their routines.
The team just came through like
In the preseason, the Nittany Li-
ons won the Penn State Invitational,
finishing ahead of the Wolverines.
But since then, it has been Michigan
who has stepped up their scoring, and
Penn State coach Randy Jepson gave
the home team credit.
"Michigan came into tonight ready
to go," Jepson said. "They did a great
job and had a good meet. We faltered,
and they hit when it counted."
After the meet, Jepson went over
to the judges not to shake hands, but
to complain. Two of the judges were
Michigan State coach Rick Atkinson
and Western Michigan coach Fred
Orlofsky, and Jepson wasn't too
pleased with this.
"I don't know that (having col-
lege coaches judging) is very ethi-
cal," Jepson said. "When would you
ever see Bobby Knight officiate a
game between Ohio State and
Purdue? It's never gonna happen,
and that's the point I was making. I
don't know that it's the cleanest and
most objective way to handle the
"You have to depend on these
judges to be (non-partial), and we feel
they are," Darden argured. "Orlofsky
and Atkinson are probably at the top
of the judging game, so there shouldn't
be a concern."
Either way, the Wolverines pre-
vailed, and Happy Valley will not be
so blissful when Penn State returns.

Team unity keys 'M'
The women's gymnastics team is becoming accustomed to being perfect
Michigan improved its record to 10-0 for the season with two big victories
this weekend. The Wolverines' success all stems from team unity.
Michigan's overall consistency is attributable to the togetherness of th
squad. The Wolverines are like a finely-tuned relay team. Each gymnast feed
off the performance of her teammates.
During the meets the more experienced gymnasts offer support and insight
to theiryounger teammates without any hesitation. This leadership has paid off
over the course of the season because the Wolverines can rely on everyone on
the roster,
"You're not out there alone,"junior Debbie Berman said. "You're out there
with 13 teammates, three coaches and trainers all rooting for you, because they
want you to make the routine for the team. That's a good feeling."
KEYS TO WINNING: Michigan must maintain its motivation in order to earn
the high away scores necessary to qualify for regionals.
"I don't think there is any problem that we will be motivated for UCLA,"
coach Bev Plocki said. "There is going to be three top-ten teams out there so
the kids are going to be fired up for it."
The Wolverines will compete at the UCLA Invitational on Saturday
against No. 6 Bruins, the No. 8 Sun Devils of Arizona State, and No. 10
. It is important that the team continues to use its winning momentum to its
advantage. Kentucky lost to Louisiana State on Friday, 191.425 to 192.25, and
it seemed that they lacked the fire and drive possessed by the Wolverines who
were coming of a school- record performance of 195.350.
HOT GYMNAST: Beth Wymer has been on fire over the last several weeks.
She was named Big Ten Gymnast of the Month for January. Wymer set or tied
new Michigan records in the all-around (39.825), floor exercise (10), uneven
bars (10) and beam (9.925). Furthermore, Wymer is currently ranked number
one in the nation for the all-around.
UNSUNG HERO: Freshman Andrea McDonald had an outstanding weekend
competing in the all-around in both meets. On Friday against Western
Michigan she placed fourth with a score of 38.0. Yesterday against Kentucky,
McDonald placed third overall with a 38.8. McDonald turned in exciting
performances at timely moments that sparked the entire team.
"I was happy to get the opportunity, but at the same time I wish Li Li
(Leung) was well," McDonald said. "I was happy to do so well."
INJURIES: Junior Li Li Leung sat out the weekend with a cold, but should
return to competition over spring break.
See NOTEBOOK, Page 8

The men's gymanstics team continued its winning ways by besting the Penn
State Nittany Lions by a score of 278.85-277.05.

Baseball head and shoulders above other pro sports.,

Have you ever been attracted to another guy?
Are you scared or confused by these feelings?
Have you ever wondered if you might be gay
or bisexual?
Would you like to talk to someone about this?
We are here to help!
Coming-out support groups are now being
formed for guys to explore these issues.
* The groups are facilitated by student-peer

Watching the National Basketball
Association's All-Star Game reminds
me of an astounding statistic: as of
this moment, the pro basketball sea-
son is only half over. How can this
be? Haven't we all seen too many
illegal defenses, too little offensive
movement, and a lifetime's worth of
Don Chaney's excuses? I guess not,
since "fantastic" NBA action will be
with us well into June.
Of course, seeing Michael Jordan
in uniform means that the baseball
season must be around the corner.

Wait a minute - doesn't that season
run even longer than basketball? Yes
and no. Spring training starts in Feb-
ruary, with the final out of the World
Series in late October. However, it's
the unparalleled greatness of the game
itself that makes me wait for baseball.
Major League Baseball has a his-
tory spanning well over a century.
While this is not a knock on the other
major professional sports, it demon-
strates the endurance of the sport.
During this time, expansion teams
have been admitted, playoff formats
changed, lights added, but three
strikes, three outs, nine innings and

nine players have remained. Pro foot-
ball seems to have significant rules
changes on a yearly basis -one year
there's instant replay, the next there's
"in-the-grasp"-and before you know
it, they're all repealed because they
only caused problems instead of solv-
ing them. This kind of debate will
always present itself in contact sports
because there will always be an argu-
ment as to how much contact is fair
and reasonably safe. No such dilemma
exists in baseball.
Speaking of changes, the current
fad in the NBA seems to be that 'big
is in', with players like Hakeem
Olajuwon and Shaquille O'Neal be-
ing the center of attention. Not too
long ago it was fashionable to find as
many athletic swingmen as possible,
and before that it was big guards, and
before that quick guards, and on and
on. It seems a little odd that so much
emphasis is being placed on size and
strength in a "non-contact"sport like
Meanwhile, the streamlined size

self, a sport which has endured de-
spite the rise other professional
leagues and its own flaws.
Of course, nothing is perfect - not
even baseball. If I was a gambling
man, I might find baseball far less
enjoyable because of the inability to
handicap the superior team. From a
fan's standpoint, too much Astroturf,
too few day games and the American@
League's hopes to turn a baseball
game into a four-hour marathon com-'
plete with designated hitters are other
It is obvious, however, that theĀ°
sport is making strides in the right'
direction. The recently adopted rev-
enue-sharing plan means that teams
from smaller cities won't have to pass
on the best players because they can't@
afford them. Each league has been
expanded to include three smaller di-
visions, allowing for more teams to
be in playoff contention late in the
season. Changes like these are only
bettering what's already the best game.
There's a reason or two why it's



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