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January 14, 1999 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-01-14

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8A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, January 14, 1999

'M' indoor track faces
first big test of season

By Jon Zemke
Daily Sports Writer
When there is a foot and a half of snow on the
ground outside, there is only one option for
Michigan's track teams. Hold a track meet inside.
The Wolverines will host Indiana, Michigan
State and Kansas this Saturday at noon in the.
Indoor Track Building. The meet will be the sec-
ond for both teams in the indoor season.
The women's team got off to a positive start by
winning its first meet of the year at the Wolverine
Invitational. Although the meet was a non-scoring
one, Michigan won 11 of 14 events against a host
of Mid-American Conference teams, including
Eastern Michigan.
"Last week was kind of low key," Michigan
women's assistant track coach Mike McGuire said.

"The top competition will come from Indiana."
Indiana is particularly strong in the throws and
is also solid in the sprints and hurdles.
In the middle distance races Michigan State
seems to be strong, while Kansas is strong in the
jumping and pole vault events, McGuire said.
"Not every school will be strong across the
board," McGuire said. "Each school will be more
than representative in certain events."
But Michigan's men's team was a little bit
thankful that the meet was a non-scoring one.
They didn't fare quite as well as the women, win-
ning only two events.
Steve Moffat won the 600 while fellow
Michigan junior Jay Cantin took first in the 800.
Cantin, an All-American, will look to lead the
young squad of Wolverines this weekend.

FILE PHOTO
The Michigan men's tennis team will rely on the experience of players like senior lake Raiton as well as
its talented freshman crop In the Big Ten singles championship. The meet will be the Wolverines' first
opportunity to see how they stack up against Big Ten competition.
Farab leads men's tennis
into singles championship

Key injuries,
hinder'M'
tankers
Michael Kern
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan women's swimmin*
team faces a tough challenge this week-
end when it hosts Purdue tomorrow and
travels to No. 2 Georgia on Saturday.
The Wolverines will face the oppo-
nents with a lineup that has been rid-
dled with injuries in the past few
months. The Wolverines have already
lost senior co-captain Jenny Kurth and
sophomore Stephanie Armstrong to
season-ending injuries.
Senior Jen Eberwein has been suffer-
ing from a viral infection since the secO
ond week of November and also con-
tracted strep throat during break.
Sophomore Jen Crisman also missed
this weekend's meet against Tennessee
because of a cold.
Michigan coach Jim Richardson
said the lack of depth created by these
injuries makes it difficult for the team
to compete in dual meets. But the
Wolverines are trying not to worry
about their win/loss record in dua
meets. Instead, the team is preparing
for the Big Ten and NCAA champi-
onships.
"Dual meets are not won by the top
swimmers on the team," Richardson
said. "They are won by the 15 or 20
swimmers, and right now we arc com-
peting with only 16 swimmers."
Because the renovation of Canham
Natatorium is not scheduled to be fin-
ished for two more weeks, this Friday's
home meet with Purdue will be helda
Ann Arbor Huron High School. Even
though not being able to hold meets
and practices in their own pool makes
scheduling difficult for the Wolverines,
they have tried not to let it bother them.
"There is no point in getting frustrat-
ed and upset, because it doesn't help
things," Richardson said.
Richardson said the back-to-back
nature of the meet poses a problem fo.
Michigan this weekend because of its
thin lineup. The Wolverines have to
choose between resting their best
swimmers in their strongest events
tomorrow and possibly sacrificing their
chances of winning, or swimming to
win tomorrow and likely being too tired
to compete with Georgia on Saturday.
Georgia is also the strongest oppo-
nent the Wolverines have faced this
season. Last weekend, Georgia defeat
ed No. 1 Stanford soundly, most likely
ascending to the No. 1 ranking when
the new poll comes out.
"They are fast and they are deep,"
Richardson said. "I'd say that they are
the best team in the country."

The Michigan
men's gymnas-
tics team will try
not to get blown
out of the Windy
City invitational
when it faces off
against a handful
of top-10) teams.
NATHAN RUFFER/Daily

Blue tumbles into Chicago

By Philip Maguran
For the Daily
Carrying lofty goals and the excitement of a
new season, the Michigan men's gymnastics team,
will tumble its way into Chicago to participate in
the Windy City Invitational on Saturday. The event
will be the team's first regular season meet of the
1999 season, and will feature appearances by Big
Ten powers Iowa, Illinois and Ohio State, all picked
in the preseason top 10. Michigan, ranked ninth in
the preseason, will also compete against Michigan
State, Minnesota and host Illinois-Chicago.
The meet will be run in Olympic order, with
each team receiving one bye round to rest and pre-
pare for the next event. The Wolverines' order of
competition will be: high bar, bye round, floor exer-
cise, pommel horse, still rings, vault and parallel
bars.
Junior Ethan Johnson says the team's goals for
the meet are simple.
"We want to go into the meet and continue how
we have been practicing this week," Johnson said.

"The main goal is to have a 100-percent hit per-
centage."
Coming off a strong sixth-place finish in a pow-
erful Big Ten conference last year and their first
NCAA regional invitation in four years, the
Wolverines look for this to be the beginning of a
season to remember. Their freshman class is ranked
by some insiders as the best in the country, and fea-
tures Daniel Diaz-Luong, Scott Vetere and Josh
Levine, all of whom are expected to make immedi-
ate impacts on the team.
The team will be led by junior Jose 'LaLo'
Haro, the six-time Mexican champion, sophomore
Justin Toman, a United States National Team mem-
ber, and sophomore Kevin Roulston, who missed
inclusion on the National Team by one-tenth of a
point last summer.
"We want to go into every meet with the goal of
hitting all of our routines," Johnson said. "The most
important thing is to stay positive, and have a good
attitude, which shouldn't be a problem with this
team."

By David Mosse
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan men's tennis team enters the
Big Ten singles championship hoping to send a
message to the rest of the conference. The
Wolverines, annual favorites to win the confer-
ence, look forward to another successful sea-
son.
The three-day event, which takes place in
Madison, marks the opening of Big Ten play
and provides teams with an opportunity to
gauge themselves.
Unquestionably, the Wolverines' go-to player
is senior William Farah. Farah already per-
formed impressively in the All-American
Championships and in the Kentucky
Invitational and has high hopes for a strong
showing this weekend.
"My goal, along with all the other players, is
to go out and win the tournament," Farah said.
"We want to show how good we are."
The Wolverines have a young squad consist-
ing of three freshmen - Henry Beam, Ben
Cox and Danny McCain.
The freshmen have performed well thus far.
All four advanced to the second round in their
first-ever collegiate competition, the Western
Michigan Invitational.
But Farah believes the real test is still to
come, as the freshmen enter the world of team

competitions.
"It's one thing to play well in regular tourna-
ments, but it remains to be seen how they will
handle representing Michigan;" Farah said. " I
remember when I was a freshman, I was
extremely nervous when I first played for
Michigan."
But the Wolverines' greatest advantage may
be found in the coaches' box. Michigan coach
Brian Eisner is nothing short of a living legend.
Eisner has been the head man at Michigan
since 1969, and has captured 18 conference
titles. Now in his 30th season, Eisner has
earned the respect of his players.
"Every team goes through its ups and downs,
but coach also remains positive and has confi-
dence in us," junior Brad McFarlane said.
The Wolverines have played in only four
tournaments, and the overwhelming majority
of their season still remains. Yet the players
look upon this weekend as a crucial step toward
a successful season.
"This is where we find out who the best
teams will be in the Big Ten," McFarlane said.
"We expect to be one of those teams and this is
the time to prove it."
In Madison, the Wolverines will look con-
tinue their successful season, and to assert
themselves yet again as the top dogs in the Big
Ten.

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