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November 13, 1997 - Image 16

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-11-13

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16A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 13, 1997

Blue wrestlers kick off unofficial season

By Tracy Sandler
Daily Sports X\ riter
Whether it's official competition or
not, the Michigan wrestling team will
be traveling to Last Lansing this
weekend for the Michigan Open.
The fourth-ranked Wolverines' sea-
son doesn't officially begin until the
Cliff Keen Las Vegas Classic on Dec.
5. According to Michigan coach Dale
Bahr, each wrestler paid his own
entry fee and is on his own this week-
"From our standpoint, it's the first
time we'll see them wrestle outside
the wrestling room," Bahr said. "It's a
chance for us to see where we are."
"It's good experience for the
younger guys," 158-pound Bill
Lacure said. "The older guys will be

looking at the younger guys to see
where they stand. They're doing a
good job in the room, but you never
know until you get out into competi-
Due to various injuries, three
Wolverines will not be competing.
Chris Viola, 118 pounds, is still
recovering from off-season shoulder
surgery, so he will not wrestle for a
couple of weeks. Frank Lodeserto, a
190-pounder, has a shoulder that is
bothering hinm, while 1 42-pound Teya
H-ill may sit out with a sprained ankle.
Speaking of injuries, this tourna-
ment will mark the return of 126-
pounder Brandon Howe and 134-
pound Damion Logan. Both were out
with shoulder injuries last season.
"Logan and Howe were both out

last year:' co-captain (167 pounds)
Jeff Catrabone said. "I'm looking for-
ward to seeing those guys get back
into action and battling. We've got a
lot of veterans, like Lacure, myself,
and Airron Richardson (heavyweight
and co-captain). We should go in
there, and I think we should have nm
less than seven champions."
Logan has moved up a weight class,
but he weon the tournament at 126
pounds last season.
"It's a whole new process," Logan
said. "I'm looking forward to seeing
where I'm at. I want to see what it's
like when I'm putting my combina-
tions together."
A.; for Howe, this tournament
marks his first collegiate competition
since the 1996 NCAAs.

'It was a hard year last year sitting
on the sidelines watching," Howe
said. "I'm excited to come hack I
think guys are pretty hungry. Training
every day, twice a day for two month.
gets you hungry and gets you excited
to go kick some ass.
More than anything, this weekend
will give the Wolverines' a chance to
compete against new people.
"A lot of us are really anxious andu\\
excited about being abl tfinally
wrestle against different people," '
daily grind of wrestling can get to \
you. We feel confident about this sea-
son. We have a lot of high goals that
we've set, and this is the first step to FILE PHOTO/Ua
see how far we are away from those Senior Brandon Howe will begin his comeback at this weekend's Michigan Open.
goals." Howe sat out the entire season last year.


Continued from Page 13A
Now that the season is officially
over, the Wolverines can try to deal
with the end of the season in more
typical ways.
But nothing about this season was
The field hockey team set reco*
this year for wins, assists and total
points. The Big Ten sent a great deal
of hardware to individual members
of the team as well. Kelli Gannon
won Freshman of the Year honors,
team captain Julie Flachs set records
for goals in a season and points in a
season, as well as career marks in
both categories. Flachs also won Big
Ten recognition as Player of the Year.
The singular moment of this se
son came in the regular season fina
as Michigan blanked Michigan State
4-0 to clinch the first Big Ten title in
the 25-year history of the program.
"The things that we accomplished
... they were our goals but in the past
they were things that we Just
dreamed of," Reichenbach said.
Now they're reality, and the future
is bright - for the freshmen, sopho-
mores and juniors.
The six seniors on the team ha
now, finally, officially played the last
game of their collegiate careers, and
not one of them is happy about it.
"It's hard, it's something that you
dedicated, for most of us, eight years
or more of our lives to -- and now
we don't really have the opportunity
for competitive field hockey any-
more." Helber said.
Helber is optimistic about the re
of the team that will be returni
next year.
"They have great, great things
ahead of them," Helber said.
For the underclass members of the
team, this season is merely a starting
point, something to build on. While
it may have hurt to be so close, and
then to be strung along for three
days, Michigan is already moving
Pankratz was difficult to reach 10
night; she had little time for
reporters as she was burning up the
phone lines talking to recruits.
Players, too, were already looking
ahead to next season.
"We've decided that we don't ever
want to be in that situation again,"
Reichenbach said. "So next year
there's not going to be a question of
whether we're going to be in or out
of the tournament - we're going*
be in."
Pankratz is optimistic as well.
"It gets them motivated to train
very hard this spring," Pankratz said.
"They're motivated to get back at it
this fall and to prove who they are."
The Wolverines are Big Ten
Champions, for the first time ever. It
took 25 years to win their first Big
Ten title. It won't take 25 more.
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