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April 09, 1999 - Image 11

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1999-04-09

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Friday, April 9, 1999 - The Michigan Daily - 11

Michigan
upend coi
y toffGagnon
DailySports Writer
The first 500 Michigan baseball
110 to be admitted to today's series-
oftener with Ohio State will find
theiselves the lucky recipients of a
free T-shirt.
But Michigan coach Geoff Zahn
knows its going to take more than
mere luck if his Wolverines want to
escape this weekend's match-up with
their shirts on their backs.
Michigan's battle with the Buckeyes
begins at 3 pm and stretches over a
fo game series.
like shirts for the Michigan
faithful, things won't come easy for
Zahn's club as they set to square off
with Big Ten pacesetter Ohio State.
The Buckeyes enter today's contest
looking to extend a 13-game win
streak that has propelled the squad to
a perfect, 4-0 conference mark.
" Meanwhile Michigan will resume
conference play after a pair of mid-
w~k wins over Mid-American
C~erence foes Bowling Green and
Eastern Michigan.
The wins helped Michigan climb
to a 17-13 standing on the season
after splitting last weekend's home
series against then-conference lead-
itg Illinois.
Yet despite his club's non-confer-
en-ce fowl slaying in the drubbings of
the Falcons and Eagles, Zahn says
his club realizes the importance of
tFg weekend's conference show-
Former 'M
star, Abbot
Msi first
ST. LOUIS (AP) - Jim Abbott s
erely making contact in his first ma
eague at-bat wasn't a victory.
Abbott, who was born with only
and, wondered what all the fuss was ab
e day.
The former Michigan standout recei
standing ovation for grounding out
ird in the Milwaukee Brewers' 9-4 los
he St. Louis Cardinals.
"It's a nice acknowledgment from
ans," said Abbott, who went 0-for-2. "
.can't say I take a lot of pride getting f
off the hands and getting applause fo
id rather do something and feel a li
n deserving of it."
ore this season, Abbott played exc
ively in the American League, wher
esignated hitter bats instead of the pit
r ..
He grounded out against Kent Merc
the third inning and took a called th
rike in the fourth.
it took a perfect play by third baser
ernando Tatis to catch him by a half-s
naa chopper that started the third innin
"That would have been a trivia questio
ker said. "The guy's a great athl
nt don't take anybody for granted. 1
o treat him like every other hitter in t
ineup."

Abbott didn't exactly treat Mercker I
very other pitcher.
'I haven't seen too many lefties, so
ooked like Randy Johnson out there,"
aid.,"Kent wasn't throwing real hard,
.me he was,"
Mercker found the Johnson referee
in
ie rnight have to get (the bat) starte
ittle earlier on Randy,"' Mercker said.
.Abbott hopes his hitting - like
itching - becomes less of a curiosity.
"It's not anything I'll look back on
herish, that's for sure," he sa
Hopefully I can improve and make a li
omen gyn
nto NCA
CAAS
ontinued from Page 10
or the Wolverines. In Tuscaloosa, Ala.
hey started on vault and overcame it,
inishing second behind the Crimson t
id
that was where their luck ran out.
Michigan's trip to Los Angeles for
ast year's national championships was
ot so eventful. Its score during prelim-
nary competition kept Michigan out of
he "Super 6" for the first time since
993.

Baseball looks to
nference best OSU

down.
"There's no question it's a big
weekend for us," Zahn said. "We
knew coming into last weekend that
our next three would see us face peo-
ple ranked ahead of us."
And after giving Illinois its only
two conference losses of the year,
No. 5 Michigan will look for more of
the same as they host the Buckeyes
in this weekend's four-game home
stand before travelling to Minnesota
to face the third-ranked Gophers.
To contend against the fearsome
Buckeyes, who enter the game on the
heels of a 16-1 steamrolling of
Ashland, Zahn says the Wolverines
must continue the type of play that
has boosted them to a 5-3 conference
record.
"We need to play heads up, con-
centrate and just continue to play our
game," Zahn said
But that likely will prove to be no
easy task against an Ohio State
squad that has bewildered opponents
all season long in building its 19-6
season mark. The Buckeyes weren't
without a bit of offensive muscle
Tuesday, as the team tallied a total of
23 hits in upending Ashland while
every Ohio State starter earned a hit
in the game's first three innings.
Not to be outdone, Michigan's
offensive prowess this week has
given fans something to cheer about,
while bolstering Zahn's optimism for
his team's chances this weekend.

TODAY
Who:
Michigan vs. Ohio State
Where:
Ray Fisher Stadium
When: 3 p.m.
On The Line: The Big Ten
best Buckeyes will look for their
13th consecutive win as they open
a four-game series with Michigan.
The first 500 fans to the Fish will
receive a free T-shirt.
"We swung the bats pretty well,"
Zahn said. "With the wind blowing
the way it was, getting 12 runs on 12
hits was nice to see. This weeks' wins
were just two more solid wins. We
need to keep that going as we head
into the weekend."
Leading the Wolverines into this
weekend will likely be right-hander
Luke Bonner, who looks for his
fourth win. The veteran hurler leads
his team with 35 strikeouts in 45
innings pitched this year, while toss-
ing two complete games in four
starts.
Meanwhile offensively, Michigan
second baseman Bobby Scales will
look to up his current hit streak to 14
games, while the senior co-captain
has reached base safely in every
game this season.

- a- -1#
DANA IINNANE/Daily
Michigan pitcher Bryan Cranson and the Michigan baseball team battle new conference-leader Ohio State in a four-game
series beginning today at 3 p.m. The first 500 fans who come to today's game will receive a free T-shirt.
Maine investigates post
: championship ruckus

t

By Kristen Dobler
The Maine Campus
ORONO, Maine (U-WIRE) - Bystanders
watched as signs, tires, bottles, screens, benches,
wastebaskets and even chalkboards were thrown
into a victory bonfire on the mall Saturday night,
but no one expected a snowmobile to be kindling.
"I just saw it come tearing down the mall and
couldn't believe my eyes," said Jake Metzler, a
junior forestry major.
Even if some of the crowd didn't see the snow-
mobile driving across the mall, everyone heard it.
"It heard it coming and then all of a sudden tons
of us started running because we thought it was
going to blow up, said Sonja Fjeld, a senior com-
munication major.
Though a male student held a "Where's my
snowmobile?" sign at Monday's pep rally, Public
Safety has yet to determine who the snowmobile's
driver was and whether it was the owner who drove
it into the bonfire.
Public Safety is currently investigating the inci-
dent and other destructive events that occurred on
campus after the University of Maine hockey team
won the NCAA national championship.
Damage to university property totalled $2,000,
but additional damage to students' cars totalled
close to $4,500.
Instead of arresting, summoning or physically
attempting to stop the crowd's actions Maine's
Public Safety chose to take different measures.
"They had a reason for it and it doesn't mean
they're just standing back," said Joe Carr,
spokesman for the university. "Another type of
action could have made the situation worse."
The decision was made with the bystanders'
interest in mind, Stormann said.
Despite people jumping into the bonfire and
people dancing on benches with fire underneath
them, no injuries were reported to Public Safety.
Rachael Dunton, a first-year undecided student
whose Volkswagen Golf was turned over on its side
near the bonfire, felt more should have been done.
"Four officers watched it [my car] be tipped
over," she said. "What are they are good for if they
can't protect the students? What are they there
for?"
After hearing chants about throwing cars into the
bonfire or flipping them over, Dunton went to
move her car, which was parked on a street near the
crowd.
Once the car was turned back over, Dunton
asked her friend to move the car because she didn't

think she could handle driving. When Public Safety
found out the car didn't belong to her friend, an
officer made him get out of the car and made
Dunton move it.
Stormann said officers pulled people, who were
bouncing cars up and down on Long Road, away
from the cars so they wouldn't tip them over.
Dunton's comments surprised him and he said
Public Safety would be willing to find out who the
officers were and discuss the incident.
A second car with New Hampshire license plates
was also tipped over in the Stodder parking lot.
Amelia Carignan, a senior communication
major, said she saw people trying to flip a cop car
over, but the cruiser was able to drive away. As it
was leaving, the students around had a hard time
breathing and Carignan said she heard rumors that
tear gas had been let off.
While Public Safety doesn't carry tear gas, it
does carry pepper spray.
Zubik said he said he wasn't aware of pepper
spray being used, but he had not reviewed all of the
reports or spoken with all of the officers involved.
Stormann said most of the crowd wasn't to
blame for the destruction and simply wanted to cel-
ebrate the event.
Despite the pouring rain, a crowd of more than
200 people surrounded the blaze for several hours.
"I'll never forget that night, it was awesome. We
just celebrated. Screaming, jumping around. get-
ting it all in" said Sonja Fjeld, senior communica-
tions major. "It was a good time."
Carignan, a senior communication major, said
the entire campus was filled with excitement.
"You could hear everyone screaming as soon as
the game was over," Carignan said. "I thought it
was really exciting. It was good to be on campus
and I was glad I didn't go home."
The down side of the event can't be ignored,
though, Carr said.
Dunton said she was extremely disappointed
with her peers' actions. She figured the students
would stop once they realized the car's owner was
right there, but it didn't happen.
"These are kids I go to school with and it really
disturbed me. When you have a face to put with an
object it's not just an object. Most people who have
a face to put with an object would think, but they
didn't."
Outside of the incidents surrounding the bonfire,
few others occurred, Zubik said. Both of the goal
posts on the football field were torn down, but the
university was able to put them back up.

AP PHOTO
Former Michigan pitcher Jim Abbot took his first Major League at-bat in yesterday's Brewers-
Cardinals game. Abbot, who was born with one hand, had not previously batted, because he was
in the American League where teams play with a designated hitter.

better contact next time out."
Like Abbott, Brewers manager Phil
Garner didn't think it was a big deal.
"That doesn't surprise me with him,"
Garner said. "He swung the bat OK in
spring training and got a hit. He'll handle
the bat OK. He'll do fine."
Abbott was 1-for-4 at the plate during
spring training with two groundouts, a fly-
out, and a sacrifice bunt.
Balancing the bat with his right arm, he
singled off Seattle's Butch Henry in spring
training March 10 - his third career hit in
spring training.
On March 28, 1992, he singled for the

Yankees off Florida's Mike Myers, now a
Brewers teammate.
On March 18, 1991, he tripled for the
Angels against San Francisco's Rick
Reuschel.
Abbott, who signed with the Brewers in
January, had been looking forward to being
a complete player for the first time since
high school.
"It was fun," he said. "I enjoyed getting
out there between innings and thinking
about something else rather than pitching.
"It feels a little bit more like when you're
a kid playing. You get to play all the
aspects."

anasts go
A regionals
doing differently come Saturday is
altering any of the things that has
earned them its lofty post-season rank-
ing.
"Our athletes recognize the fact that
they are the most successful when they
are relaxed, and have the most fun,"
Plocki said.
In addition to being relaxed, there are
more keys to the Wolverines' attempt at
nabbing their first-ever, national cham-
pionship.
"We have been talking a lot about
how each athlete has to understand that

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