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March 07, 1994 - Image 16

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-03-07

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8 - The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday, March 7, 1994

Men set
despite loss
to Bucks
The No. 5 Michigan men's gym-
nastics team returned home late Sat-
urday night with good and bad news.
On the positive side, it placed first
against No. 19 Kent State Friday,
scoring a 276.9, as it finished ahead of
the host Golden Flashes (269.8) and
No. .18 Army (269.7).
At No. I Ohio State Saturday, the
Wolverines reached a new standard,
setting a school record with a 282.25
However, the good news ends
there. The Buckeyes overshadowed
Michigan's brilliant effort, and fin-
ished first (284.8). Army made the
trip only to take last place with a
Although his squad didn't win,
coach Bob Darden was more than
pleased with its effort.
"(We) went into the (Ohio State
meet) with a real good level of confi-
dence," Darden said. "It's nice to see
that we are competing with Ohio State
and not having to look up to them
from a distance (anymore)."
However, the Buckeyes were with-
out Drew Durbin, who ranks second
in the nation in the all-around with a
56.975 average. Durbin competed at
the American Cup in Florida, where
he and gymnasts from around the
world could strut their stuff.
Ohio State, though weakened by
its loss, got a major lift from Kip
Simon. Simon, who is ranked 12th
nationally in all-around average, won
the competition with a 57.75.
"(Kip) is a real good anchor for
that squad," Darden said. "He's the
nucleus and catalyst that really drives
the Ohio State team."'
"He's one of the top gymnasts in
the country," Michigan junior Raul
Molina added. "It was no surprise to
see him win the meet. He's been good
since he was twelve years old."
Molina himself made a solid con-
tribution, scoring 9.75 on floor exer-
cise, 9.55 onparallel bars, 9.5 on
horizontal bar and 9.0 on vault. Junior
Brian Winkler also scored high for
Michigan, particularly on the floor
exercise (9.75) and parallel bars (9.8).
Junior Bob Young, who led the
Wolverines in all-around with a 56.2,
sat out the Kent State meet along with
junior Rich Dopp. Darden, knowing
that beating the Golden Flashes and
Army would not be a difficult task,
felt the rest would do them some
Due to the openings in the lineup,
Darden gave opportunities to others,
hoping someone would step in and
fill the void. One individual who took
advantage of this was freshman Flavio
Martins, as he scored an impressive
52.9 on all-around.
"To go all-around in a freshman
year on such a strong team is a real big
plus," Darden said. "Very few teams
can boast having a freshman that con-

sistent on all six events."
Although Darden's strategy didn't
help the Wolverines prevail in Co-
lumbus, the experience the younger
gymnasts received will be a plus for
the future. Michigan may have lost to
nemesis Ohio State, but Molina was
"It was the best loss we ever had,"
he said.

Women gymnasts
get lackadaisical win

For the time being, the Michigan
women's gymnastics team will have
to settle for one of the better consola-
tion prizes that sports offers. Although
it did come away with a victory, a
somewhat lackadaisical performance
overshadowed its trip to Columbus;
In a rare coed meet, the Wolver-
ines survived a long competition and
beat Ohio State with ascore of 193.525
over the Buckeyes' 187.575.
Despite one of their weaker per-
formances of the season, the Wolver-
ines still dominated the Buckeyes. Of
course, they were competing against
a No. 30 team whose highest score
thus far this season is a 188.9.
The consolation prize of this list-
less win is a new composite score.
After this weekend, Michigan will be
able to drop a 191 and raise its com-
posite to 194.04, possibly enough to
move No. 4 Michigan past No. 3
Alabama in the NCAA poll.
"We weren't as sharp as I would
have liked," coach Bev Plocki said,
"but I'm starting to get very picky (in

the last stretch of the season). Any
time we get through a meet without
incident of injuries, we're doing well."
Last weekend's matchup was one
of Michigan's rare Big Ten meets this
season, but with academic and other
outside stresses taking their toll, the
Wolverines were uncharacteristically
unable to pump themselves up for this
It was probably my
worst meet yet this
season. You can't hit
all of the time.'
- Beth Wymer
Michigan gymnast
Junior Beth Wymer led
Michigan's sweep of the top four all-
around spots with a score of 38.8,
freshman Andrea McDonald came in
second with 38.515, junior Kelly
Carfora placed third with 38.4 and
junior Debbie Berman came in fourth
with 38.05. Seymin Lau had the Buck-
eyes' highest finish with a fifth place
Wymer was as All-American as
ever scoring a perfect 10 on the floor,
but she also had the only break of the
meet with a fall off the balance beam.
She attributed her inconsistency to
fatigue and stress.
"It was probably my worst meet
yet this season," Wymer said. "You
can't hit all of the time."
Michigan also captured the top
five finishes on the vault - Wendy
Marshall's 9.85 was the top score -
and the top four spots on the uneven
bars - Berman's 9.8 was good for
first place.
"From here on out, the kids will be
fired up...this is the part of the season 0
that counts," Plocki said. "Everything
we've done up until this point is a
dress rehearsal."

Women's gymnast Carrie Ann Zickus performs on the uneven bars in a meet earlier this season. The Wolverines
won this weekend, surviving a disappointing effort to beat Ohio State in Columbus.

Blue netters take a turn for the better with 7-0 victory

The Michigan men's tennis
team had gotten us d to misfor-
tune in its dual meets.
Those fortunes took a turn for
the better Saturday, as the Wol-
verines obliterated Cincinnati, 7-
Combining good teamwork and
strong individual efforts, Michi-
gan (0-1 Big Ten, 3-4 overall) lost
only one set, in the No. 6 singles

Needless to say, Michigan
coach Brian Eisner was pleased
with his team's performance.
"To win with this kind of deci-
siveness," Eisner said, "(we) took
two steps forward as a team with
this performance."
Michigan sprung out of the gate
quickly, sweeping the doubles
matches from the Bearcats (4-5
overall). Sophomore John
Costanzo teamed up with senior

Dan Brakus to defeat the Bearcats'
top two players, Tom Svoboda and
Travis Raque, 8-5.
The team's momentum carried
it right through the singles
matches. Every player, from the
first seed to the sixth, turned in an
impressive solo effort.
"It wasn't an issue whether or
not we won (the meet)," Eisner
said. "We want to use every match
to make this a better team."
The most impressive results
came from the middle of the
lineup. Third seed Grady Burnett
defeated Zaheed Fessof, 6-2, 6-2,
while Costanzo knocked off
Cincinnati's Marty Harken, 6-1,
The fifth slot turned out the
individual effort of the day. Adam
Wager shut out Kyle Mason, 6-0,
"I would rate Adam Wager's
performance as far and away the
finest performance this year at
Michigan," Eisner said.
Wager attributed his success
to mental preparation.
"Coach has been saying we

need to start hitting out on the ball
and enjoying ourselves out there,"
Wager said. "I played the whole
match with confidence."
The convincing victory came
on the heels of an exhausting
week-long road trip that included
stops in Texas and Illinois. It also
marked the beginning of a seven-
meet homestand..
"In general, we were emotion-
ally and physically drained,"
Eisner said of his team. "Now it's
time to relax."
Only one match remains be-
fore Big Ten action resumes, a
dual meet Friday against Eastern
With the road woes behind
them and the Big Ten season
ahead, the Wolverines hope to take
the positives from this match and
improve as a team.
"Today was a dramatic step for-
ward," Eisner said. "We're start-
ing to do things the way we should.
We feel as though (we're ready
for) dramatic development toward
being the kind of team we are
capable of being."






Sophomore Peter Pusztai prepares to return a shot in a match against
Northern Illinois. Michigan won its match against Cincinnati Saturday, 7-0.






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