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April 05, 1999 - Image 17

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-04-05

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The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - April 5, 1999 - 5B

2 ,3 Michigan 7

r r - r 9 G
' Michigan 12
Ohio State 4

'g' Michigan 10

Player of the weekend
Tray Conrad
Conrad recorded her 300th hit on
Saturday to become only the fourth Big
Ten player to do so. With threerits yes-
terday she now posts 305 for her career

Ohio State

3

Ohio State

2

-mm. mmmm-J

oung pitching staff emerging together as a team
Jamie Gillies, Marie Barda and Kate Eiland compliment each other with their different pitching styles

)wer. She
by the

By Stephanie Offen
Daily Sports Writer
Don't mention the 26-game unbeaten
streak to the Michigan softball pitching
staff.
"Don't jinx us," they said with a laugh in
response to the mention of their success.
But by looking at the numbers that junior
Jamie Gillies, sophomore Marie Barda and
freshman Kate Eiland are posting, it looks
like it might take a little more than a jinx to
rattle them.
The trio has recorded very similar statis-
tics. All have below a 2.0 earned run aver-
age and no more then two losses. This bal-
ance is a change from the years past.
Michigan has been used to one pitcher step-
ping up, most recently Sara Griffin in 1998.
"In the past we've really relied heavily on
one pitcher," coach Carol Hutchins said.
"But I've always tried to keep my staff a
staff. To have an equal rotation is a little
different from what we are used to."
This year the team is striving for the con-
sistency of all three as a team instead of the
dominance of a single individual.
"The most consistent part of our game
recently has been our pitching," Hutchins
said. "We don't have very dominant pitch-
ing but they each seem to do their part."
Each pitcher has her own style which
complements the others, posing a "triple
threat" to the teams they face.
Hutchins considers many factors when
chosing the pitcher for each game.
The pitchers are selected based on who
has been effective recently and who has

been effective in the past against the oppo-
nent.
The main focus when selecting a pitcher
is the style of the team that Michigan is fac-
ing. The coaches then choose the player
who will be most effective against that
style.
And the equality among the pitchers
makes it so the opponent will have just as
good a chance to face the junk-ball of
Eiland than the power of Barda or the expe-
rience of Gillies.
"They all have different styles that com-
plement each other very well," pitching
coach Jennifer Brundage said. "So if one of
them is not effective one game, we can just
bring in someone else."
The equality does not take place only on
the field, but off it as well.
The three pitchers, along with the rest of
the team, have a great relationship, which
makes playing together even more fun.
"I think this is the best I've ever gotten
along with any pitchers of any team,"
Gillies said.
And as the other two looked to her with
surprise, it was easy to see that there was a
special bond between the three.
They spend a lot of time joking with each
other, and even making up amusing nick-
names to call each other during practices.
"The key to our team is that we have so
much fun," said catcher Melissa Gentile
who will miss the entire season due to
injury. "When we're not having fun we
don't play well together."

But all joking aside, the three hurlers take
pitching and softball very seriously.
"I expect a lot from my teammates and
they expect a lot from me," Gillies said.
On the field, the friendship between the
pitchers has helped bridge the gap between
experience and inexperience.
Eiland, the only freshman of the three,
has benefited from the experience of the
other two.
Eiland played a major role right away for
the team, having to make adjustments very
quickly.
"It's always hard being a freshman,"
Eiland said. "But its good when you have
older pitchers on the staff that know what
they are doing and that are really support-
ive."
Eiland has adjusted quite well. After an
0-3 start, it was Eiland who got the team its
first two victories, and now holds a 11-2
record.
"It's always a tough adjustment coming in
as a freshman," Brundage said. "The pitch-
ing distance is three feet further back. But
she came in and she had some bad days but
she was able to work through them and real-
ly come along."
Even though Eiland, Barda and Gillies
get a little uneasy when the progress of this
year's team is brought up, it can be said that
without a doubt the success of the team has
brought each pitcher a lot of confidence.
"The 'C' word is the biggest thing for
me," Hutchins said. "I need them to walk
into that circle with confidence."

How the Big Ten
Fared
Rankings and records as of Apr1 4.
No. I Mich!Wa (30.5-1) beat Ohio State 7-
3, 12-4, 10.2.
No. 2 Mnnesota (2$-9) beat Purdue 4-1, lost
6-3, and won 2-1
No. 3 Iowa (23-10-1) lost to Fenn State 1-3, 2-
3,0-3.
No.4 Michgan State (23-11) beat Wiconsin
3-2, Sunday's game cancelled because of rain.
No. 5 Purdue (20-12) beat Minnesota 4I,
lost 3-6, and won 2-1.
No.6 Wisconsin (10-7) lost to Michigan State
2-3 Sunday's game cancelled because of rain.
No.7 Penn State(1611) beat Iowa 3-1, 3-2,
1-0.
No. 8 Northwestern(19-15) beat to Indiana
4-1, 64, 5-2.
No. 9 Ohio State (10-17) lost to Michigan 3-
7,4-12,-2-10.
No. 10 knx~na (13-177 lost to Northwestern
14, 4-6, 2-5.

April 7
April 10
April 11
April 13
April 14 +
April 17
April 18

Next

Opponents
NOME GAMES IN CAPS
at Purdue
MINNESOTA
MINNESOTA
PENN STATE -
CENTRAL MICHIGAN
at Northwestern
at Northwestern

Softball can look to last year
for this year's inspiration

By Michael Shafrir
Daily Sports Writer
After a 4-5 start, some people had written
off the Michigan softball team. Other Big Ten
coaches said it couldn't overcome the loss of
pitcher Sara Griffin to graduation and catcher
Melissa Gentile to injury. They questioned its
desire and concentration - things that hurt
them in last year's Women's College World
Series. And they were wondering if maybe the
preseason hype surrounding the Wolverines
was too much for them to handle.
But now, the doubters have been convinced..
Michigan has ripped off a 26-game unbeaten
streak and has those same people that were
questioning them earlier in the year, wondering
just how good this Michigan team is.
If Michigan is looking for a watermark, all
they have to do is look at last season.
The Wolverines were an astounding 56-7
(22-1 Big Ten) in '98 led by Griffin who was
35-3 with a 0.97 ERA. Gentile led the team
offensively with 13 homeruns and 57 RBI's.
Last year's team won the Big Ten champi-
onship and traveled to Oklahoma City with
dreams of an NCAA title. After a first game
win against Texas, they were knocked out of
the tournament following back-to-back losses.
They have the tools this year to improve on that
finish.
Pitchers Marie Barda, Kate Eiland and Jamie
Gillies give Michigan a luxury most teams
don't have - three outstanding pitchers. Any
of the three would start for most of the pro-
grams in the country. Barda leads the staff with
an 11-I record. Eiland is 11-2 while Gillies has
amassed an 8-2 mark.
It isn't very often that it is hard to pick out a
team's strength, but Michigan's hitting is just
as potent as its pitching. The only thing miss-
ing from Michigan's lineup is Gentile's home-
run threat, but the team has found ways to
make up for it.
From the top of the lineup to bottom, the
Wolverines have been cranking out hits at an
alarming pace, something which pleases
Michigan coach Carol Hutchins.
"We've been working real hard on our

offense," Hutchins said. "I'm real happy that
it's been paying off."
Traci Conrad, last year's leader in every
offensive category besides homeruns and
RBIs, has continued right where she left off.
Conrad is Michigan's career hit leader with
305 hits.
"She's a great hitter," Hutchins said. "She
expects to get a hit every time up."
Will all this amount to more post-season
sucess for the Wolverines? It is probably too
early to tell. But it is hard to argue with their
24-0-1 record over their last 25 games - a
streak which has set a. Michigan record for
games without a loss.
Last year Michigan never won this many
games in a row. They didn't have three pitchers
who were all so good, that there was no dropoff
from one to the next. And they did not have the
balance that this year's lineup has.
All the factors are pointing to a run deep into
the Women's College World Series, and maybe,
a taste of winner's glory. But until then,
Michigan will continue to do what they do best
- win.
"I just keep telling the kids to play with con-
fidence and have fun," Hutchins said. "That's
probably our biggest strength."
HOW GOOD IS GOOD?
MICHIGAN IN THE LAST FIVE
YEARS
Year Record Big Ten/NCAA finish
1994 34-26(18-10) T-3/no tourney
1995 50-12(22-6) 1st/l7th
1996 51-14(20-4) 1 st/7th
1997 56-16-1(18-4)2nd/5th
1998 56-7(22-1) 1st/5th
1999 30-5-1G3-4) ???P??

Top 25 teams
1. UCLA (33-0)
2Arzona (304)
3. Fresno State (33-7)
4. Washington (24.6)
5, sww*iiana (31-5)
6. Arizona State (30-8)
7 MICHIGAN (30-5-1)
8. Oklahoma (28.9)
9. Stanford (26-7)
10. South Carolina (31.8)
11. LSLU (25-S)
12.Oregon'State (27.10)
13. Oregon (27-10)
14. Califomia (27-8)
15. Texas (24-12)
16.llinois-Chicago (42-13)
17. Southern Mississippi 634.5)
18. Texas A&M (31-8)
19. South Floda (33-13)
20. Iowa (22-9-1)
21. New Mexico(2948)
22. Massadiusetts (15-7)
23. Minnesota (22-7)
24. DePaul (19-10)
2S. Missouri (26-12)
OHIO STATE (2)
AS R H RBI BB SO PO A
Palaroan, cf 4 0 1 0 0 1 3 0
English, If 4 0 1 0 0 0 1 0
Chenevey, dh 4 0 2 0 0 0 0 0
Weigel, ss 4 0 0 0 0 0 1 3
Roth, rf 3 1 1 1 1. 0 3 0
Kimura, c.1b 4 0 2 0 0 0 8 0
West lb,3b 3 1 2 0 0 1 4 1
Vanderpool, 2b3 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
Kratzer, 3b 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Wessendorf ph1 1 1 0 1 0 0 0
Hileman,p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4
Totals 31 2 9 1 2 221 9
E: 3 (Palaroan, Weigel, Kratzer). DP: 1 LOB: 10 2B:
3 (Chenevy, Kimura, West) 3B: none HR: 1(Roth)
SB: none CS: none SH: none. SF: none
MICHIGAN (10)
AS R H RBI BBS50PO A
Conrad,1b 4 2 3 1 0 0 9 1
Kolen,2b 5 2 2 1 0 1 1 2
Davie,lIf 4 1 2 1 1 0 1 0
Volpe, dh 4 1 1 0 0 1 0 0
Kosanke, 3b 4 1 3 2 1 0 2 2
Mika, cf 3 2 3 2 1 0 0 0
Garza, ph,cf 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Tune,ss 5 0 2 0 0 0 2 2
Connerpr 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Bugel,c 2 0 0 0 0 1 1 0
Lappo, c 2 0 0 0 0 0 1 0
Taylor, rf 3 1 1 0. 1 0 4 0
Eiland, p 0 0 0 0' 0 0 0 1
Barda, p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Totals 37 10 17 7 4 3 21 9
E: 2 (Tune, Bugel) DP: 1 LOB: 12 2B: 4 (conrad,
Kollen, Kosanke, Mika) 38: none HR: 1(Mika) SO:
1 (Tune) CS: none SH: 1 (Volpe) SF: 1 (Conrad)
Michigan ........211 0033-10
Ohio State ...........000 1100-2

Michigan
Eiland
Barda

IP H
3.0 6
4.0 3

R ER BB
1 0 2
1 1 0

SO
1
1

AB
16
15

BF
18
15

LOUIS BROWN/Daily
Even with the loss of catcher and offensive presence Mellissa "Skeeter" Gentile Michigan has gone on
to the longest unbeaten streak in school history this season.

BUCKEYES
C tinued from Page LB
'he's pitching great right now," coach Carol Hutchins
said. "We're really pleased with how they're performing
right now. All three of them are performing great. It's
nice to know that if one of them is having an off day one
of them can come in and perform well."
Catherine Davie belted a solo shot, her 16th, in the
first inning. Her homerun was one of two runs scored in
the first.
The Wolverines went on to score two more in the sec-
opd and four in the third before going scoreless in the
h.
o more RBIs by Volpe at the bottom of the fifth
capped off the four runs needed for the mercy.
The first game of the double header-was closer as
Michigan still won handily 7-3.
Opening up the scoring with a Davie double, and the
Wolverines chalked up three first inning runs with the
he1p nf a a snrifice flv by Mika and another by Volpe.

MICHIGAN (7)
AS R RB ISBBSO PO A
Conradlb 3 1 1 1 1 0 13 0
Kollen,2b 4 1 2 1 0 0 1 3
Davie,lIf 4 2 2 1 0 0 0 0
Volpe, dh 3 1 1 1 0 0 0 0
Garza, pr 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Kosanke, 3b 2 0 2 1 1 0 1 4
Mika, cf 2 0 0 1 0 1 0 0
Lappo c 4 0 2 1 0 0 4 0
Conner pr 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Tune, ss 3 0 2 0 0 0 2 3
Taylor, rf 1 1 1 0 1 0 0 0
Barda, p 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3
Totals 26713 7 31 21 13
E: 3 (Kosanke, Lappo, Tune). DP: 1 LOB: 7 2B: 4
(Davie 2, Lappo, Taylor) 3B: 0 HR: none CS: Conrad
SH: 3 (Mika, Tune, Taylor) SF: 3 (Volpe, Kosanke,
Mika)

OhoState IP R ER BB SO AS SF
Hileman 7.0 17 10 7 4 3 37 43
At: Buckeye Field
Attendance: 236
. "f6ay2 SOx 6bscor
OHIO STATE (4)
AS R H RBIABBSOPOA
Palaroan, cf 3 1 1 0 0 1 2 0
Smith, rf 3 2 3 0 0 0 0 0
Chenevey, c 3 0 1 1 0 1 1 0
Weigel, ss 3 0 2 3 0 0 0 2
Kimura,1b,p 2 0 0 0 0 1 3 1
Roth, dh 2 0 0 00 00 0
West,lb 3 0 0 0 0 0 2 0
Vanderpool, 203 0 0 0 0 0 4 1
Kratzer,3b 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
English, If 1 1 1 0 0 1 2 0
Hilemanp 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Totals 22 4 8 4 0 414 6
E:1(Weigel). DP: 1 LOB: 3 2B: none 38: 1
(Smith) HR: none SB: 1 (English) CS: none SH:
none. F: none
MICHIGAN (12)
AS R H RBI BB O PO A
Conradlb 3 2 2 2 0 0 6 0
Kollen, 2b 4 1 1 1 0 0 2 1
Davie, If 3 2 1 2 0 0 0 1
Volpe, dh 4 2 4 2 0 0 0 0
Garza, pr 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0
Kosanke,3b 2 0 1 1 0 0 1 3
Mika, cf 3 1 1 0 0 1 1 0

OHIO STATE (3)
AB R H RBI BB 0 PO
Palaroan,cf 2 0 0 0 0 1 21
Smith, if 3 0 0 1 0 0 4 0
Chenevey, c 3 0 0 0 0 0- 12
Weigel, ss 3 0 0 0 0 1 01
v: .. 11ti 0 n 11 n nA d

A
2
1

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