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September 08, 1994 - Image 64

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-09-08

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Page 4F

THE MICHIGAN DAILY NEW STUDENT EDITIONSPORTS THURSDAY,SEPTEMBER 8,_1994

Baseball
Hitters return to Big
Ten prominence

Women's Lacrosse
Laxers go 11-0 with
new coach, training

By RYAN WHITE
Daily Baseball Writer
The Michigan baseball team sailed
into uncharted waters during its 1994
season, namely the Big Ten playoffs.
The Wolverines made their first
postseason appearance in five years
when they qualified as a No. 3 seed in
the conference's tournament.
They didn't do it the easy way either.
Michigan waited not only until its
final game to clinch the playoff spot,
but let that go into extra innings.
In their final game of the regular
,season the Wolverines defeated Illi-
nois, 8-6, in 12 innings. That win,
coupled with Michigan State and Iowa
splitting a weekend series in East Lan-
sing put Michigan in the playoffs.
Michigan went into the tourna-
ment, held at C.O. Brown Stadium in
Battle Creek, knowing that the only
way that it would make the NCAA

tournament would be to win the play-
off championship. And most consid-
ered the chances of that happening to
be about the same as the chance of
finding no beer at a frat party.
The Wolverines, however, made
things interesting in the Cereal City.
After losing its opening game to
Minnesota,8-1, Michigan got on a roll.
They beat Michigan State, 5-1, and
Minnesota, 4-2. In the tournament's
double elimination format the victories
knocked out the Spartans and the Go-
phers, and sent the Wolverines into the
championship round against Ohio State.
The Buckeyes had yet to lose a
game in the tournament, so Michigan
would have to beat them twice to win
the title.
In game one the Wolverines took
a 3-0 lead into the top of the ninth, but
Ohio State rallied with two out to tie
the score and send the game into extra

By JEN DiMASCIO
Daily Sports Writer
An enthusiastic core of first-year
players, combined with a few seasoned
veterans and a determined new coach,
Ty Wilkinson, led the Michigan
women's lacrosse team (11-0-2) to a
banner season.
Wilkinson, a former player for the
Detroit Tubes, came aboard early in the
team's winter training. He stepped up
conditioning efforts and added con-
structive drills, said formercaptain Kara
Groschner.
It paid off.
After a slow start - two games
were canceled because of snow - the
Wolverines marched on. They collected
wins at the Ohio State University, Indi-
ana University and Michigan State
University tournaments, losing only two
times and winning by large margins.
In their only home contest, the team

defeated Michigan State 12-2, drawing
on stellar performances from the team's
high scorers, senior Karen Ross and
junior Kate DeRosayro.
Both losses were suffered to the
Chicago Club -a team comprised of
players from Northwestern's now de-
funct Division-I team.
Laura Foreman said the Michigan
State tournament's trophy presentation
proved to be the season pinnacle. "It
was great to come together as a team
and finally see a reward for it all,"
Foreman said. "I'm looking forward to
a good season next year because we
had so many freshmen."
She said teams at Pittsburgh Uni-
versity and Carnegie Mellon Univer-
sity are starting a league for club
teams. Such a network will offer an
expanded schedule and added incen-
tive - awards for league champion
will be given.

Brian Simmons holds up his bases loaded, two-out diving catch against Ohio
State in last season's Big Ten tournament. The Wolverines won the game, 4-3.
innings. Michigan won the game in ended up losing the game, 9-7.
the 12th when catcher Scott Niemiec "This can do nothing but help the
hit a single with the bases loaded to program," Michigan coach Bill
score the winning run. Freehan said of the team's tourna-
In the championship game the ment success. "This represents a move
Wolverines got off to a sloppy start in the right direction."
which resulted in an early five run The team should continue in that
deficit. It was one which they were direction next season as it will lose only
unable to battle back from and they three players to graduation.

I . I

at a second rate gym
at
WOLVERINE FITNESS CENTRE

1993-94 season leaves women's
volleyball team asking questions

By CHARLIE BREITROSE
Daily Sports Writer
"What if? Only if... "
This is what the Michigan
women's volleyball team must have
been saying after finishing with a
disappointing 11-18 record, 7-13 in
Big Ten play.
If the season had turned out the
way that head coach Greg Giovanazzi
and the rest of the Big Ten coaches
had anticipated, the Wolverineswould
have finished third and received their
first ever NCAA tournament bid.
However, this was not to be.
Michigan's record was just good

enough to avoid the Big Ten cellar.
The final three weeks of the sea-
son brought out the best in the team.
The Wolverines won four of six
games, including wins over strong
Illinois and Purdue teams. These final
weeks was one of the few times when
the Wolverines had a completely
healthy squad.
Four of Michigan's outside hitters
went down at least once during the
season. Two of the Wolverines out-
side hitters closed their collegiate ca-
reers with school records: Michelle
Horrigan the kills record and JoAnna
Collias the digs record.

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Horrigan's record is especially
impressive considering she was in-
jured for most of the first half of the
Big Ten season. She incurred an ankle
injury in the first conference game
against Michigan State.
The match-up with the Spartans
marked the beginning of a chaotic
Big Ten schedule. The Wolverines
had finished with a 4-4 record in a
tough non-conference schedule.
Michigan hoped to build on their solid
start. Instead Michigan State, a team
picked to finish last, swept the Wol-
verines in three straight games. To
make matters worse both Horrigan
and junior Aimee Smith went down
with injuries.
The Wolverines were finally
healthy two weeks later when Wis-
consin and Northwestern came to
town. The return of Horrigan sparked
a weekend sweep. With a 3-3 confer-
ence record things seemed to be im-
proving.
But bad luck hit Michigan once
again. After being swept at home by
Notre Dame the Wolverines lost two
matches against Indiana and Purdue,
and Collias sprained her ankle inthe
first match of the weekend. These
losses were the start of a nine-game
losing streak.
The streak ended when the Wol-
verines won two thrilling five-game *
matches against Indiana and Purdue.
Sophomore setter Erin McGovern
helped spark the winning weekend
with a career-high 55 assists. The
sweep of the Indiana schools began a
successful final three weeks of th'
year for the Wolverines.

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