The Michigan Daily - Friday, April 4, 1997 - 11
Blue softball to
face rival Iowa
Top spot in Big Ten at stake
By Josh Keliam M
t Sports Writer
Despite what Michigan softball coach Carol Hutchins is
telling her team, this weekend's three-game series at Iowa just
might be the most important series of the season.
'he thing that we try to keep in mind, and that we try to tell
ouxkids, is that (this series) is no more important than the one
against Wisconsin, and no less important," said Hutchins,
referring to the Wolverines' three-game sweep of the Badgers
last weekend. "Every game we play counts the same.'
But that doesn't change the fact that No. 6 Iowa (3-0 Big
-T=, 27-5 overall) is one of the best teams the eighth-ranked
yerines (3-0,30-8-1) will face all season. It doesn't change
tfact that the two are early front-runners in the Big Ten race:
It4esn't change the fact that this weekend could have large
imiplications in the Big Ten regular-season title race.
The Hawkeyes and Michigan are very similar teams.
both are led by a strong trio of pitchers, who are all likely to
see action this weekend. Iowa hurlers Jenny McMahon, Leticia
Castellon and Debbie Bilbao's combined earned-run average
of 0.82 is only slightly better than the 1.18 ERA of Wolverines
Sam Griffin, Kelly Holmes and Jamie Gillies.
MThe ace of the Hawkeyes' staff is Bilboa, who is a threat on
'mound and at the plate. Her 13-3 record is complemented
a 0.95 ERA and 47 strikeouts. Bilboa also brings a .419 bat-
ting average, seven home runs and a team-leading 39 RBI.
McMahon and Castellon make the pitching staff a force to be
reckoned with, combining for a 14-2 record and sporting
ERAs well below 1.00.
Both teams have solid lineups from top to bottom. The
"Hh*keyes' team batting average of .366 is tops in the Big Ten,
11but Michigan is close behind at .315. While the Wolverines
iae six .300 hitters, Iowa has 10 batters hitting over.300, with
five hitting .400 or better.
Iowa is paced offensively by Christy Hebert, who carries a
l batting average and a .784 slugging percentage. Hebert
as plenty of power, with seven home runs and 35 RBI.
Both teams enter the series on a roll. Iowa is on a five-game
winning streak, which dates back to March 26. Michigan has
a Ginning streak of its own, eight games, since a loss to Ohio
Uiiversity at the Boilermaker Invitational on March 22.
'M' track two-steps to
By T.-. Brka
Daily Sports Writer
Before competing in an event dur-
ing a typical track meet, the athlete
has to go through many rituals to
ready himself, stretching and jog-
ging to work out the kinks before the
On a larger scale, the Michigan
men's track and field team has com-
pleted its warmup, as the Wolverines
competed against various collegiate
and club teams at the Wake Forest
Invitational two weeks ago in their
first outdoor meet of the season.
The warmups are over for the
Wolverines, as Michigan travels to
Austin, Texas, to compete at this
weekend's Texas Relays.
The stellar field in Austin will be
filled to the brim with top teams and
athletes, giving Michigan an early
chance to see where it stands nation-
The participants this weekend will
include nine-time Olympic gold
medalist Carl Lewis and Florida
State's Warrick Dunn, an All-
American running back for the
Seminoles, who will compete in the
Leading the way among the col-
lege teams this weekend is Arkansas,
the defending national champion in
both the indoor and outdoor ranks.
The quality of the field is not lim-
ited to the Razorbacks, however.
Other teams looking to capitalize at
the meet include host Texas, which is
coming off a fifth-place finish at last
year's outdoor championships.
The sixth and seventh-place teams
from last season's outdoor champi-
onships, Wisconsin and LSU, are
also making the trip to Texas, along
with Baylor and Minnesota.
Leading the way for the
Wolverines is a strong long-distance
lineup, which includes seniors Scott
MacDonald and Kevin Sullivan,
junior Don McLaughlin, freshman
Jay Cantin and sophomore John
Mortimer, the only Wolverine to
compete at last weekend's Raleigh
Relays, finished second in the
10,000 with a personal-best time of
28:50:67, qualifying him for the
NCAA championships in June.
Neil Gardner, the reigning Texas
Relays and NCAA champion in the
400 hurdles, is the only other
Wolverine to have qualified for
NCAAs so far this season.
Gardner and the long-distance
runners will be key to a good show-
ing for Michigan, because the
Wolverines seem to be outgunned in
the field events.
Arkansas leads the way with two
top-ranked jumpers in triple jumper
Robert Howard and long jumper
The Longhorns also feature three
long jump contenders in U.S.
Olympian Richard Duncan, Ivan
Wagner and Jacob Davis.
Southern Methodist looks to lead
the way in the throwing events,
boasting the top two seeded discus
throwers, Alex Tammert and Jason
Senior Brian Wildfong, the lead-
ing Michigan thrower, finished
fourth in the shot put and 33rd in the
discus at the Wake Forest
Michigan pitcher Kelly Holmes will try to shut down the No.
1 offense In the Big Ten when the Wolverines visit Iowa.
While Michigan has been playing well, Iowa has been play-
ing a little better, statistically speaking.
"I don't feel they have any weaknesses, and that's what
makes them so tough," Hutchins said.
Fielding errors have been a problem for the Wolverines all
season. Nearly 1/3 of the runs Michigan has allowed have been
unearned. In Tuesday's 5-2 victory over Western Michigan, a
second-inning error put Michigan down 1-0 early, a hole that'll
be more difficult to overcome against Iowa.
"We need to just relax and stay confident;' Hutchins said.
"The teams are so evenly matched, that whoever plays the best
is going to win."
And playing the best means playing solid defense.
The Wolverines' offense will have to be operating at a high
intensity level to stay with Iowa's high-powered offense, which
averages close to six runs a game, according to Hutchins.
"Iowa's biggest attribute is that they are one of the mentally
toughest teams that we play, every year," Hutchins said. "They
are always on the attack, they are always aggressive and they
are always fired up.'
Don't just use us for the
Fall 1997 Courses
Offered by the
Department of Microbiology and Immunology
w New - Introduction to Infectious Diseases:
Designed to introduce undergraduate biology majors and pre-professionals to the variety
of strategies used by bacteria and viruses to cause disease. Taught by faculty who study
pathogenesis of cholera, cystic fibrosis, gonorrhea, oral and genital herpes, Legionnaire's
disease, and tuberculosis. Micro 505. Lectures. 3 Cr. MWF, 1-2 pm, G127 Angell Hall
Basic Microbiology & Immunology: Three separate but integrated modules present
fundamental concepts of microbiology (Micro 501), immunology (Micro 502), and
virology (Micro 503). Appropriate for students interested in a basic understanding of the
field. Lectures. 1 Cr/module*. MWF, 10-11am, 5623 Medical Sciences Building II.
Studies in Microbial Physiology and Molecular Biology: Three separate modules form
a seamless course focusing on important topics in microbial molecular biology and
:genetics. Appropriate for students preparing for careers in health professions or graduate
work who are interested in a relatively advanced presentation of topics in microbial
physiology (Micro 606), genetics and DNA transactions (Micro 604), and regulation of
gene expression (Micro 605). Lectures. 1 Cr/module*. T-Th, 9-10:30 am, 5623 Medical
Sciences Building U.
Advanced Virology: Three separate but integrated modules present fundamental
t molecular and cellular concepts of viral replication and pathogenesis through lectures and
discussion of the primary literature. Will focus on viral-host interactions (Micro 615),
DNA tumor viruses (Micro 616) and retroviruses (Micro 617). Appropriate for pre-
nrnfesinnals and students interested in graduate study in hiolov. Lectures. 1 Cr/