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April 06, 1998 - Image 12

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The Michigan Daily, 1998-04-06

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4B - The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - April 6, 1998

Men's gymnastics places fifth at,
regionals, sends four to NCAAs

By David DenHerder
Daily Sports Writer
When the Michigan men's gymnas-
tics team traveled to Amherst, Mass.
this past weekend, it was already rid-
ing a wake of accomplishment.
After finishing winless just two
seasons ago, the Wolverines had
established themselves as the eighth-
best team in the nation this year, and
they earned the right to compete in
the NCAA East Regional on
Saturday.
Michigan was seeded fifth out of
the six teams that qualified, and fin-
ished in the same slot with a team
score of 225.1.
Although the team failed to qualify
for the NCAA Championships - an
opportunity only given to the top
three regional finishers - several
individual members did earn the right
to participate.
Michigan sophomore LaLo Haro
captured the top slot in the all-around
competition with a 56.725. Haro has
been a strong all-around performer
for the Wolverines all season, and
recently placed ninth at the Big Ten
Championships.
Also topping the competition was

Justin Toman on parallel bars. The
Michigan freshman scored a 9.8 to
capture the top seed in the East for
the NCAAs in two weeks. In addition
to being the team leader in the event,
Toman also took top honors on paral-
lel bars at the Big Tens.
On vault, senior Tim Lauring
assured himself a spot at the national
competition, while freshman Kenny
Keener qualified on still rings.
Michigan's Kevin Roulston, this
year's Big Ten freshman of the year,
failed to qualify for the NCAAs.
Michigan coach Kurt Golder said
he was satisfied with the team's per-
formance Saturday.
"We came in seeded fifth, and I
wanted to at least maintain that posi-
tion," Golder said.
Surprising subpar performances
from top-seeded Iowa and Penn State
allowed Ohio State to finish first,
with Illinois second. The Hawkeyes,
who were the undefeated Big Ten
champions, squeaked into the third
and final spot after suffering a devas-
tating performance on pommel horse.
Penn State's season ended as it fin-
ished fourth in the region.
The Wolverines were 1.85 points

away from qualifying, and Golder
said that with a perfect meet, tho
team may have qualified.
"They certainly opened the door
for us, but we just weren't able t
take advantage of it," he said.
But although the Wolverines could
not mount a qualifying run, they did
come away with another victory that
has been elusive this year. After the
team was edged out by rival
Michigan State three weeks in a row,
Michigan had the last laugh on
Saturday.
The Spartans fell apart in postsea-
son competition, falling not only to
the Wolverines but to the entire fiel
placing sixth.
Haro, Toman, Lauring and Keener
will have two weeks to perfect their
skills before heading to Penn State
for the NCAA Championships on
April 16-18.
Regardless of how those four fare,
the Wolverines have already accom-
plished a goal that many didn't
expect of them until 1999 - going
from the league cellar to the ranks 6
the NCAA elite in two short seasons.
"We're already a year ahead of
schedule," Golder said.

NAT HAN RUFFER/Daily
Freshman Justin Toman took the top qualifying spot on the parallel bars at the NCAA East Regionals last SaturRday. Tman will
join three of his teammates as they travel to Penn State for the NCAA Championships on March 16-18.

Swan, Long help netters sweep rivals

By Mark Francescutti
Daily Sports Writer
Boston wasn't the only exciting place for
Michigan athletics this past weekend, as the fans
at the Varsity Tennis Center saw two Big Ten
battles that left them on thc edges of their seats.
Big wins from senior Arvid Swan and sopho-
more John Long helped the Michigan men's ten-
nis team squeeze out two Big Ten wins, against
Minnesota yesterday, 4-3, and Iowa on Saturday,
6-I.
But the wins weren't a cakewalk for the
Wolverines (4-0 Big Ten, 9-3 overall).
Yesterday, the Golden Gophers, who beat
Michigan in the Big Ten Championships last
season, was looking for redemption after being
upset by Michigan State, 4-3, the day earlier.
"After they lost to Michigan State, they want-
ed to show that they could play at a certain
level," Michigan coach Brian Eisner said.
Minnesota's Tom Chicoine didn't disappoint
his team as he blew by senior David Paradzik 6-
1, 6-2 and Jon Svensson defeated senior captain
Brook Blain in straight sets.
Sophomore Matt Wright, who was on fire the
previous day against lowa, kept up the heat in
the first set against Adam Selkirk.

But Selkirk pulled away in the second, and in
the third, after a 5-5 tie, he sent Wright home
with only his second loss in eight matches.
"That is a match that I think normally we
should have" Eisner said. "Matt got just himself
in a position where he wasn't controlling the
tempo like he likes to do."
Suddenly, the tempo shifted, and the
Wolverines found themselves down 3-1 and in
danger of losing their first match at the Varsity
Tennis Center, To win, Michigan needed three
victories from its last three singles players.
Junior Will Farah responded first with a
comeback win in the first set and a blowout win
in the third to finish off Jorge Duenas, 7-5, 2-6,
6-2.
Long, tied it at 3-3 with his straight-set victo-
ry over Tyson Perry.
Eisner had moved Long into the singles rota-
tion this weekend and while his performance
this weekend may not be his very best, he hasn't
lost a dual match since early last season.
With Long's win, the match was in a dead
heat at 3-3. Both teams' players huddled togeth-
er, the crowd packed one small set of the bleach-
ers and all eyes turned to the match between
Swan and Minnesota's Martin Michalowski.

Swan's eyes had been right on in the first set
he placed several perfect volleys behind his
opponent, but in the second, the lead changed
hands and ended up 6-6 and in a tiebreaker.
After a strong serve from Michalowski that
swung the score to 7-6 in his favor, Swan fought
back and won the next three points to take the
tiebreaker. the match and the meet for the
Wolverines.
"Arvid went after all his shots, he didn't win
them all but he didn't back into it," Eisner said.
This was probably our most emotional win
of the year."
Iowa also gave Michigan a run for its money
for awhile on Saturday. After winning the dou-
bles point, Michigan fell behind by losing three
of the first six sets in singles.
This weekend "was our first home match in
awhile and we were a little nervous," Farah said.
Wright was the only Wolverine that com-
pletely destroyed his opponent, mostly due to an
almost perfect first serve.
"I'm playing with a lot of confidence now,'
Wright said. "I feel that if I play the way I am
capable of, I should win."
- Daily Sports Writer Stephanie Qfhen con-
tributed to this report.

PAUL TALANIAN/Daily
The Michigan men's tennis team defeated Iowa and Minnesota this weekend to improve their Big Ten
record to 4-0. The Wolverines have yet to lose a match at the Varsity Tennis Center.

THE BU
STOPS HERE'!

SPORTS DESK:
647-3336
Call in 'M' club sports results
before 3 p.m. on Sunday.

Men's golf struggles in Kentucky

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By Rick Harpster
Daily Sports Writer
Hoping to improve on a subpar per-
formance at the Dr. Pepper
Intercollegiate, the Michigan men's
golf team traveled to Lexington, Ky.,
to compete in the 20-team Kentucky
Invitational. This weekend was not
much better for the Wolverines
though, as the they placed an under-
achieving twelfth.
Fighting through windy, rainy con-
ditions that were less than ideal for
golf, the competitors in the Kentucky
Invitational played 36 holes on Friday
and 18 on Saturday.
Toledo won the tournament for the
second straight year by posting a team
score of 871-17 shots ahead of second-
place Notre Dame. Michigan's team
total of 912 was not even within sight
of the leaders.
"I'm more than disappointed right
now," Michigan coach Jim Carras said.
"We're allowing teams that are not as
good as us to beat us."
Carras has been searching for a cou-
ple players to step up and solidify a
spot in the lineup. Mike Harris, Keith
Hinton and Kevin Vernick have given

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Michigan consistent play this year, but
no one else has really emerged.
With usual starter Kevin Vernick
missing this weekend's event to attend
a family wedding, the Wolverines' lack
of consistency and depth was definite-
ly exposed.
Still, Mike Harris completed anoth-
er solid tournament by placing fourth
overall with a 54-hole total of 218 (70-
76-72).
Keith Hinton also cracked the top
10, carding a 221 (77-71-73), which
earned them a 10th-place finish. But
Harris and Hinton had to look far
down the leader board to see any of
their teammates' scores.
Mike Reabe posted a 240 (80-77-
83) while Kevin Harris shot a 242 (83-
76-83), and Mike Affeldt finished with
a total of 244 (78-87-79). But none of
those scores were good enough to fin-
ish among the top 80 golfers in the
field.
"It's discouraging to have two guys
shoot really well and still struggle as a
team," Carras said. "The absence of
Vernick hurt us because it meant one
more guy had to play well."
Michigan is now in a position where
it must post some impressive numbers
over the next few weeks if it is to qual-
ify for the NCAA Regionals that start
on May 14. The Wolverines' first test
will be next weekend when they head
for Huntington, W.Va. to do battle in
the Marshall Invitational.

Women finish
10th at Indiana,
By Jon Zemke
For the Daily
Progress was made by the
Michigan women's golf team On
Saturday at the Indiana Invitational.
Unfortunately, like the game of golf
itself, that progress has been slow
in coming.
As has been the pattern, Indiana
finished first (299) out of 15 teams
in the event, which included nine
Big Ten schools.
The Wolverines tied with Illinis
State for 10th place, an impro e-
ment from their 13th place finish at
the Wilderness Invitational last"-
week.
Shannon Park led the way for
Michigan, tying for 11th place with
a score of 78. She finished seven
strokes behind tournament winiz&
Mary Klein of Notre Dame.
Captain Nicole Green was
Michigan's next-highest finisher,
tying for 42nd place with a score of
83.
Rounding out the rest of the
Michigan squad were Laura Hess
and Jennifer Baumann, tying for
55th at 85, and Amy Talbot, who
came in with an 88 putting her in
73rd.

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