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September 08, 1994 - Image 20

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Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-09-08

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Page 20

THE MICHIGAN DAILY, THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 8, 1994

I

'M' women open inaugural campaign

.t

By ANTOINE PITTS
Daily Sports Editor
For years the Michigan athletic de-
partment has been known as one of the
nation's best. However, until recently,
it lacked the world's most played sport.
Last Saturday marked the historic
debut of varsity women's soccer at
Michigan as the Wolverines tied Wis-
consin-Green Bay, 1-1, at Mitchell
Field. Michigan christened its home
turf - Elbel Field - Monday with a
3-1 defeat of Northern Illinois.
"I thought we played well," Michi-
gan coach Debbie Belkin said. "We
put our chances in the net today. The
girls were pretty frustrated about
Saturday's game because they thought
they performed so well."
The Wolverines dueled the Phoe-
nix to a scoreless tie through regula-
tion. Freshman midfielder Debbie
Flaherty notched the first goal in
Michigan history to give the Wolver-
ines a chance to win their opening
game. However, Kim Marx scored to
tie the game for Wisconsin-Green Bay
with 30 seconds left in the period.
Monday's game saw the Wolver-
ines take a three-goal lead into half-
time. Senior forward Alicia Treadway
got credit for her first goal of the
season as her crossing pass deflected
off a Northern Illinois defender into
the net just three minutes into the
game. Eight minutes later, Flaherty's
shot from just outside the penalty box
got past Huskie goalkeeper Rachelle
Danekas, giving Michigan a 2-0 lead.
Just before the half, sophomore
forward McKenzie Webster knocked
a rebound by Danekas for Michigan's
final goal. Northern's only tally came
one minute into the second half.
Michigan goalkeeper Jory Welchans
stopped a penalty shot by Debbie
Huston, but Huston reached the re-
bound first and stuck it in the net.
Michigan's first women's varsity
soccer team features a good mix of
recruits to go along with nine players
from last year's club team. Among
those 15 recruits are four players who
have transferred from other programs.
Sophomore midfielder Whitney
Ricketts, who played high school soc-
cer at Ann Arbor Huron, jumped at
the chance to transfer from Temple.
"In high school, I always had thought
in the future that Michigan was going to
get a team," Ricketts said. "When things
went wrong with the program atTemple
that's when I knew I wanted to come

0

EVAN PETRIE/Daily
The women's varsity soccer team earned its historic first victory Monday with a 3-1 defeat of Northern llinois.

back and play at home."
Other transfers include Welchans,
from Detroit Mercy, sophomore
midfielder Clare Loftus from Hart-
ford and sophomore midfielder Kim
Phillips from Butler.
"Michigan was always in the back
of my mind," Ricketts said. "Pretty
much all the transfers were just wait-
ing for the program to go varsity."
The freshman class features de-
fender Carrie Povilaitis, the 1994 Miss
Soccer Michigan, and defender Jaime
Ross, a member of the Olympic De-
velopment Program.

The returning club players will try
to provide experience and leadership
for the young team.
"We have a lot of new talent but
also players who have Division I ex-
perience as well as a club team that
has played at a national level," Ricketts
said.
"The club team worked hard to get
to this point," said Treadway, a mem-
ber of the club team for three years.
"For us to go varsity was overdue."
Until a permanent facility can be
constructed for them, the Wolverines
they will use Elbel. The former intra-

mural soccer field was resodded last
year and a short restraining fence was
erected to deter anyone from using it.
"It's a nice central location,"
Belkin said. "We just hope people
respect the signs and the fence. We
just need to use it for two months."
Michigan begins its Big Ten sched-
ule Sunday at Indiana before return-
ing home next Wednesday against
Detroit Mercy.
"We have areal tough schedule ahead
ofus," Belkin said. "We're going tokeep
working on team defense andkeepwork-
ing on putting the ball in the net."

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