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October 10, 1994 - Image 19

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The Michigan Daily, 1994-10-10

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The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday. October 10, 1994 -- 7

aWoo -7

CCHA title up for grabs as changes

abound among perennial

By DARREN EVERSON
Daily Hockey Writer
If you're a hockey fan, chances are you couldn't
keep from chuckling at the strike that ended the
baseball season. "Hockey players don't care about
money," you thought. "Can't happen in our sport,,"
you said.
Well, chances are you're not chuckling anymore,
because the owners locked the players out anyway.
Luckily, though, the powers that be in the Central
Collegiate Hockey Association have not done the
same to their athletes. It should come as no surprise,
then, that in a year full of work stoppages, the team
that comes out on top in the CCHA this year will be the
one that outworks the rest of the pack.
Last season, Michigan
simply outmanned and out-
classed its rivals en route to
winning both the regular
season and playoff titles.
Led by the experienced play P re
of goaltender Steve Shields
and 60-point scorers Brian Wiseman and David Oliver,
the Wolverines took care of business earlywinning 16
of their first 17 conference contests.
Those three stars are gone, however, and with
them any realistic chance of a repeat of last season's
performance. However, Michigan isn't the only
team in this league that will rely on a new group of
workhorses this year.
The No, 1 goaltender position at Lake Superior
State is vacant, since incumbent Blaine Lacher took
a job with the Boston Bruins. Freshman John
Grahame and sophomores Paul Sass and Sean Ku lick
will compete for the top spot. Defensemen Keith
Aldridge and Brad Willner also have their work cut
out for them, as they will be asked to lead a defense
that posted seven shutouts and a 2.29 goals against
average last year.
All of this means that despite coming off their
second NCAA championship in three years, the Lak-
ers might be hard-pressed to win their first CCHA
regular season title since the 90-91 campaign.
"If you lose three or four forwards, you can
generally get by with that," Laker head coach Jeff
Jackson explained. "But if you lose goaltenders and
defensemen, that has a bigger impact on where
you're going to finish."
Some of the same questions facing Lake State

also need to be answered by Michigan State. The
Spartans retain the services of -senior netminder
Mike Buzak, but defensive inexperience still could
be a problem in East Lansing.
"The most difficult position in my estimation to
come in and play is defense," head coach Ron Mason
said. "It's very difficult for freshman defensemen to
make the adjustment. But I think our players are as
good as it gets, and I think they'll do it."
Hockey writers across the Midwest picked Michi-
gan State to win the title this season, and forwards
Anson Carter and Steve Guolla are the two main
reasons why. In order to challenge for the champi-
onship, however, Michigan State will certainly have
to do a better job at home, where they won just 17 of
33 contests last season.
Mike Mazzoleni is no stranger to Michigan State's
Munn Ice Arena, having played goalie for the Spartans
back in the late 70's. When Mazzoleni returns to his
old college stomping grounds this season, however,
it'll be as head coach of hated foe Miami.
Whether the Redskins can improve on last year's
fifth-place finish depends primarily on junior center
Kevyn Adams, who led Miami in scoring, and
junior goalie Kevin Deschambeault, who will have
to replace longtime netminder Richard Shulmistra.
"A feel good with Deschambeault in goal,"
Mazzoleni said, "and I feel there will be a lot of
competition to back him up, which will help
strengthen that position."
Last season, Western Michigan finally earned
the kind of respect reserved for the league's best
teams, as they had a winning record against the
Spartans and Lakers.
As is the case with Lake State and Michigan
State, Western will be most inexperienced at the
blue line. Juniors Darren Maloney and Misha Lapin
figure to be the leaders of that unit.
Western Michigan fans can only look at their
team's fourth-place finish (two points shy of second
place) with despair, knowing that they gave away two
points in an early-season loss to traditional doormat
Kent State. They needn't worry about that happening
again this fall, now that the Golden Flashes have
dropped hockey as a varsity sport.
The league will fill the vacant I 1th spot next year,
when Alaska Fairbanks becomes an official mem-
ber. Fairbanks managed a respectable 8-7 league record
last year, and return a number of the key players of that

tague powers
squad. Brian Fish and Larry Moberg split time mind-
ing the net last season and will have to step up their
play, now that graduation has lessened the Nanooks'
scoring punch.
Notre Dame could also have problems putting
the puck in the net, but they won't have graduation
to blame - the Fighting Irish lose a league-low
three players from last year's team. However, there's
still a couple of reasons to look forward to hockey
in South Bend this year.
"For the first time in 26 years we have a new look
at Notre Dame," head coach Ric Schaefer said.
"Gone are the sound panels that we had in the
fieldhouse that looked like a set out of Laugh-In."
"Other teams have been talking about new are-
nas and new players - I'm proud to say that
Bowling Green has recycled an old coach," said
first-year Falcon coach Buddy Powers, reflecting
on the new faces and places in the CCHA. His
Falcons are primed to compete for the league title,
which would also be something new.
All-CCHA rookie team selections Bob Petrie
and Curtis Fry return, and with 22-goal scorer Brian
Holzinger, they give the Falcons one of the better
blends of talent and experience in the conference.
Ohio State has as much experience as one could
ask for, with 18 out of 22 players from last season's
club still on the roster. Head coach Jerry Welsh
expects the league's 'abused stepchild' - as de-
scribed by its own preseason prospectus - to be
one of the most improved teams in the league.
Last season's lower echelon of teams seem to
have the greatest number of players returning this
year, and Ferris State is no exception. Defensemen
Andy Roach, an all-rookie teamer, and Dwight
Parrish, voted the team's Most Improved Player,
have the task of making goalies Seth Appert and
Rich Nagy's lives easier, since they have just 13
career games played between them.
On paper, Illinois-Chicago didn't appear to be
much of a threat to anyone last season. However, if
last year is indeed any indication of what's to come,
Flames head coach Larry Pedrie already knows his
team can compete - but what they must do is to
improve.
"In the four years I've been here...we've played
fairly well, but we find ourselves on the losing end
of a lot of close games," Pedrie said. "We'll certainly
focus on avoiding that this year.

Freshman class delivers on both ends of the ice

not going to get worked up about it."
After'a Jason Botterill goal gave the
White an early 1-0 advantage, the Blue
reeled off five unanswered scores to
take a 5-1 lead into the first intermis-
sion.
For the game, the front line of
rrison, Knuble and Hilton combined
or eight points, including five in the
first period alone.
Going into the game, Berenson knew
that Turco would have his hands full
with the three forwards.
"We wanted to make sure he got
some work and he did," Berenson said.
"It's a good introduction to college
hockey for a young goalie, and a big
ustment.
0 "It was a good learning experience
or him."
After giving up the early Botterill

goal, seniorgoalie AlLogessettleddown
and kept the White offense at bay.
"I thought Loges played well,"
Berenson said. "But he didn't face the
pressure that the other team did."
The senior from Lake Ronkonkoma,
N.Y., is enthusiastic about getting the
chance to perform, after being relegated
to backup duties the previous three sea-
sons.
"For me, every type of scrimmage is
a game because I haven't played very
much in two-and-a-half years," Loges
said. "I have to play with that game-time
mentality."
The Wolverines' highly touted fresh-
man class made its first public appear-
ance Friday night in impressive fashion,
and Berenson was excited to see the
newcomers in action.
"They're all competing well and fit-
ting in," he said. "They're not going to
carry our team, but as the season moves
on, I think everyone is going to see why
they're here."

there.
It is one of the most consistent and
dependable parts of your day.
For the last four years, Steve
Shields, Brian Wiseman, David Oliver
and Mike Stone were Michigan
hockey's morning paper.
In fact they were more than that.
They were the New York Times - the
paper of record.
These four players graduated as
the winningest class in the history of
Michigan hockey after amassing a
staggering
129 wins in
four years.
Shields
00 graduated as
the NCAA's
all-time winningest goalie and joined
Wiseman and Oliver as finalists for
last year's Hobey Baker award, col-
lege hockey's most coveted individual
prize.
But much to the despair of Wol-
verine hockey faithful everywhere, that
edition is now out of print, as all four
players have now moved on to the
professional ranks.
However, a new edition - head-
lined by this year's highly touted fresh-
man class - has arrived on campus
and is circulating.
Goalie Marty Turco, center/left wing
Matt Herr, center Robb Gordon, right
wing Bill Muckaltand defenseman Chris
Fox round out a recruiting class ranked
No. 1 by the Central Scouting Service.
With only one week of official
practices under their belts, the quintet
came out firing in Friday's Blue-White
i4ntrnnn Ad rrmmao

legiate level of play.
Turco comes to the Wolverines
after playing with the Cambridge
Winterhawks last year. With Shields
now minding net in the Buffalo Sabres
organization, Turco has some rather
large skates to fill.
"I try not to look at it as coming in
behind the NCAA's all-time winningest

start of any of the newcomers.
A two-sport star in hockey and
baseball last year at the Hotchkiss
School, Herr holds the unique distinc-
tion of being drafted by teams in two
professional sports.
He was selected by the Washing-
ton Capitals in the fourth round of the
1994 NHL draft and by the Atlanta

for the Wolverines for years to come.
The 6-foot- IMuckalt led the British
Columbia Junior Hockey League in
goals scored last year with 70.
Fellow six-footer Gordon led the
same league in scoring last year after
tallying 6P goals and 89 assists in 60
games for the Powell River Paper
Kings.
"I think we expect it out of our-
selves to perform well," Gordon said.
"We're touted as a good class and we
should perform that way. (Last year's
seniors) are a chapter that's closed,
and I think now we're supposed to
start a new chapter."
Fox is stepping into a crowded unit
behind the blue line. With eight elder
defensemen on the squad, it may be
hard for the Grosse Pointe Farms,
Mich. native to see as much playing
time as his fellow freshmen. Fox, how-
ever, is more offensive minded than
the Wolverines' other defensemen, and
that may lead to more ice time for him.
Much will be expected from these
five over the next four years, and just
because they're freshmen doesn't
mean that their coach won't be afraid
to cast them, skates first, into big-time
college hockey.
"They're all highly touted for one
reason or another, and I've always felt
good about throwing freshmen into
situations," Michigan coach Red
Berenson said. "When I took over the
program, the program was pretty sad,
so the freshmen were pretty impor-
tant.
"We got to the point where it be-
came a norm that if you were a fresh-
man coming to Michigan, you were
going to play and we would find a role
for you on the team. Either you thrive
on it or you don't do well, but for the

October
14 York University
21-22 Colorado College
28-29 at Ferris State
November
4 Ohio State
5 Lake Superior State
I1 Michigan State
12 at Bowling Green

January
7
13-14
20
21
27
28
Februai
a

Team Canada
at Lake Superior State
Bowling Green
Notre Dame @
Western Michigan
tllinois-Chicago
ry
Western Michigan
at Michigan State

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