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April 02, 1999 - Image 8

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1999-04-02

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.


Acoreboard--
NBA NEW YORK 78,
BASKETBALL Cleveland 74
TORONTO 88, L.A. Clippers at
Indiana 87 DALLAS, inc.
DETROIT 107, Vancouver at
Chicago 75 SAN ANTONIO, inc.
NEW JERSEY 90, Seattle at
Atlanta 85 DENVER, inc.
Philadelphia 88, Houston at
MlAMI 84 UTAH, inc.

NHL
HOCKEY
Boston 3,
MONTREAL 2
WASHINGTON 5,
Florida 3
Pittsburgh at
OTTAWA, inc.
Tampa Bay at
ST. LOUIS, inc.

II{pe Irichigtt r 3 ttilg
SPORTS

Tracking 'M' teams
Help the Michigan baseball team fill the stands at Fisher.
Stadium for its all-important four-game series with Illinois
this weekend. Students are admitted free for the games.
Today's game starts at 3 p.m., while tomorrow's double-
header begins at 1 p.m.
Friday
April 2, 1999 1

All jokes aside
as 'M' softball
enters Big Ten
By Michael Shafrir
Daily Sports Writer
Carol Hutchins was getting mad - really mad. As coach of
the seventh-ranked Michigan softball team, she has extremely
high expectations of her players. So she couldn't understand
why they weren't hitting their cutoff in practice yesterday.
Throw after throw sailed over their targets before Hutchins
finally yelled, "Alright, what's going on?"
Her players would've liked to have answered, but they were
all laughing too hard. That was when Hutchins realized she
was the victim of an April Fool's joke.
"We knew all day they were going to try and do something;'
Hutchins said. "They're a bunch of jokesters "
What they aren't joking about is their 27-5-1 record and a
23-game unbeaten streak.
Michigan tore through the the month of March without a
loss, thQ first time in history that the Wolverines have gone a
month with no setbacks.
Hutchins attributes their success to Michigan's ability to
have fun.
"It's been a trademark of our program the last few years,"
Hutchins said. "I tell them all the time the only time they get
in trouble is when they don't have fun."
'Michigan takes its traveling circus on the road this weekend
to Columbus for a three-game series against Ohio State. The
Buckeyes are not necessarily a formidable foe - they are 10-
13 on the season - but this weekend is important nonetheless,
because it marks the start of Big Ten play.
Hutchins has tried to stress to her team that their record so
fir means nothing against conference opponents.
"I've told them everybody is 0-0," Hutchins said. "Nothing
changes, you don't treat it any differently - it's still softball."
Freshman second baseman Kelsey Kollen is going to Ohio
State with family on her mind. Her sister played four years for
the Buckeyes and will be in attendance at the games.
"It's just gonna be fun;" Kollen said. "We always joke
around when we play them in football or hockey or softball"
Despite the perfect record in March, Michigan has their eyes
set on a much more distant goal - the Women's College
World Series. The Wolverines try not to focus on the games
they've played, and instead look at what lies in front of them.
"March is over. April is a new month,' Kollen said. "What
14w did in March doesn't matter, it's what we do in May that
counts."
The way Michigan has been playing, it would not be sur-
prising to see it sweep the Ohio State series. The Wolverines
should emerge victorious from Columbus and come back
home knowing that they will be working just as hard as before
they left.
But when they take the practice field next week, laughing
gnd joking like before, there will be one person who will be
just a little bit more observant than she was before.
She will be the one yelling at them to hit their cutoff.
March-ing On
With Wednesday's wins over Eastern Michigan, the
Michigan softball team wrapped up an unbeaten month.
jlere's a look at the highlights of a perfect March:
® Outscored opponents 136-28
® Extended current unbeaten streak to 23
* Outscored ranked opposition 29-6

Streaking Blue eyes
Big Ten king Illinois

By Geoff Gagnon
Daily Sports Writer
Bobby Scales knows what he wants.
Both he and the Michigan baseball
team know Illinois is standing in their
path to the Big Ten lead, and that this
weekend's four-game series will pro-
vide the early edge.
"This is a big series," Scales said.
"They've got something we want. They
won the Big Ten last year, and we're
going to go after them hard."
Riding a streak that has seen seven
Michigan
wins in TODAY
eight of its.
last out- Who:
ings, the'
Wolverines Illinois at Michigan

are hoping
their good
f o r t u n e
continues
as they
look to
upendthe
defending

Where:
Ray Fisher Stadium
When: 3pm.
Notable: Wolverines
are looking for eighth
win in nine attempts.

were the defending Big Ten champions
and we went down there and they pret-
ty much laid the wood to us. We know
what we have to do this year."
And that, Scales says, includes con-
tinuing an offensive charge that has
allowed the Wolverines to put teams
away with relative case.
Led by the dominant hitting of Jason
Alcaraz, Michigan has rolled into an
offensive rhythm that has supplied an
unthinkable 42 runs in the team's last.
four contests.
Failing to go unnoticed amidst the.
glare of their offensive brilliance,
Michigan's mound-minders have sur-
prised Michigan coach Geoff Zahnt@
with an equally strong showing.
"I've been very pleased with our
pitching," Zahn said. "We've got a
number of guys throwing very well."
And that potent combination has
Michigan hopeful in the promise that
this season holds while they positiobn
themselves for a run at the conference
title.
"Our aim is to win the Big Ten. It's
that simple," Zahn said. "I think if you
have any other aim in mind then it's the
wrong one. We've got a veteran squad
with guys who remember when we
won it in 1997."
Yet despite their recent success,
Zahn says he's taking nothing for
granted this weekend, as the
Wolverines' most formidable confer:
ence foe visits Ann Arbor.
"They're going to be tough
games,' Zahn said. "They took three
of four from us down there last year
We know that we just have to bd
ready to play our best games of the
year and hopefully we can keep
swinging the bats."

conference champions.
On the strength of a 24-hit onslaught
two days ago against Detroit-Mercy,
Scales and company managed their
highest run total since 1995 in disman-
tling the Titans 23-2.
The second baseman extended his hit
streak to nine games as he drove in a
pair of runs on 3-4 hitting.
But Scales knows this weekend's
matchup will likely prove a bit more
challenging as the Wolverines look to
avenge a trio of losses last season, in
which the Illini outscored Michigan by
a total of 45-22.
"Last year we had something they
wanted," Scales, a co-captain said. "We

DANA LNNANE/Daily
Bryan Cranson and the Michigan baseball team look to spoil illinois' dominance in the Big Ten as the
conference's two top teams square off in a four-game series this weekend.

Women's ice hockey responds to varsity snub
Funding still an issue with Michigan Athletic Department's decision

By Ryan C. Moloney
Daily Sports Writer
Last week, the Michigan Athletic Department granted varsi-
ty status to two club sports - men's soccer and women's water
polo.
In doing so, it renewed the hope of other club sports that one
day the varsity spotlight might shine on them.
But for the Michigan women's ice hockey club team, the
decision was yet another hurdle to clear in their quest for varsi-
ty status.
"We heard towards the end of last year that they were looking
for teams'" Michigan hockey club member Meghan Green said.
The Athletic Department "never really gave us any direct
answers."

In the months prior to the decision, an Athletic Department-
sponsored committee met to discuss the pros and cons of ele-
vating one or more club teams to varsity status.
In spite of the widespread interest in the men's program, the
initiation of a women's team just didn't appear to be economi-
cally viable.
"It makes sense for them. It's cheaper" Michigan hockey club
member Dana Aronson said. "Hockey is a very expensive
sport."
Money is a reality not lost on the Athletic Department, but
Senior Associate Athletic Director Peg Bradley-Doppes said it's
not the only determining factor.
"The Board in Control of Athletics looked at cost, regional
conferencing, competition, the facility and the cost on the stu-
dent-athlete" Bradley-Doppes said. "They unanimously sup-
ported water polo and soccer."
Notably, the newly-renovated Canham Natatorium is current-
ly underused and is capable of housing another varsity program.
The men's soccer team won the national club championship the
past two years and has been lobbying for a team since 1989.
But the economics of the situation could not be avoided.
"The cost of adding a women's hockey team - $1.2 million
- is more than it costs to add soccer and water polo combined,"
Bradley-Doppes said. "In the interest of being fair, this is it!'
While the team will undoubtedly plead its case again in the
future, the present doesn't bode well in terms of recruitment.
The state of Michigan is a hotbed for women ice hockey play-
ers, as evidenced by the sport's growing influence. But the

women's ice hockey teams at Michigan and Michigan State -
another team in search of varsity status - simply cannot match
what colleges on the East Coast can offer in terms of competi-
tion and scholarships.
"A lot of kids go out East;' Michigan State club team mem-
ber Joanna Yang said. "Both of our programs are getting
stronger, but are still weak in comparison."
Players packing their bags towards the Atlantic is a pattern all
too familiar to Green.
"I talk to a lot of girls who don't want to go out East, but who
can blame them?" Green said. "It's frustrating because we just'
don't have the organization to compete.!
The team at Michigan is relatively young in comparison to
older, more grizzled club teams such as men's crew and
lacrosse, and it may take years before their varsity dream,
becomes a reality.
But both the team and the Athletic Department are hopeful
for the future of women's ice hockey.
"They need to remember that it takes time Bradley-Doppes
said. "They are spreading the news, and they've got support
from (Michigan men's hockey) coach Red Berenson.
"Men's soccer was very classy in their lobbying efforts an
they finally made it. We don't do anything halfway here. To do
it the right way it takes time"
The women's team intends to succeed sooner or later.
"I think if people heard about it, it would get attention,"
Green said. "Of those sports and ours, we have the best
chance of drawing people in the future"

From (K, l ,and
RQ(IQRt to

2.niVersit

1ro essor

I1

by
Ed Christian, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of English & Bible
Kutztown University of Pennsylvania

I

A story of God's miraculous leading,
His refusal to give up on a lost sheep,
and His ability to make a useful vessel

I

I

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