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April 03, 2000 - Image 11

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-04-03

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The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - April 3, 2000 - 3B

eBlue shows force with 5 AII-Americans

By Rohit Bhave
Deily Sports Writer
IOWA CITY -Though their hearts were heavy with
the disappointment of Friday night's runner-up finish,
Michigan gymnasts Justin Toman and Kris Zimmerman
tied for the parallel bar individual national champi-
onship Saturday with 9.9 scores.
Toman, competing with a brace to protect his torn
-ACL, repeated as national champion on the event
despite not being able to perform a full dismount.
Zimmerman, a freshman, tied Toman's impressive mark
despite performing in his first NCAA championship
"It's a great feeling. I'm definitely excited. It makes
up for a little of the disappointment of yesterday. I can't
wait for next season," Zimmerman said.
Toman and Zimmerman joined Scott Vetere, Kevin
* Roulston, Brad Kenna and Kenny Keener to represent
Michigan in Saturday's individual finals. Toman,
Zimmerman, Vetere, Roulston and Keener were named
All-Americans for their top six finishes.
Vetere (scoring a 9.9) and Keener (9.825) finished
second and third respectively in the still rings finals,
while Roulston (9.8) placed fourth on the floor exercise.
Friday night, Vetere finished third as an NCAA all-
around performer with a score of 58.075 despite falling
on the high bar.
Though the Wolverines did not exhibit the same indi-
vidual finals dominance as they had at Big Tens, when
they won five of six events and swept the first four
places on rings, Michigan had to perform with the
heartbreak of Friday's second-place finish.
For five seniors, it was their final chance at winning
a national championship. Lalo Haro, Ethan Johnson,
Adam Hattersley, Bryan Pascoe and Jesse Coleman wit-
nessed their final meet over the weekend. Following the
team finals, Pascoe reminisced about his program's rise
to its lofty status.

Teeing Off


No one can mess up
'M' spring football

Michigan's Brad Kenna was one of five Wolverines to be named All-American this weekend at the NCAA
Championships in Iowa City.

"Everyone was dedicated, working out over sum-
mers, getting recruits to come here," Pascoe said. "This
is the greatest group of team members - everyone
wanted to be better, everyone kept raising the bar"
Despite losing five seniors, next year's squad may be
even stronger. Of the five, only Haro and Johnson con-
sistently contributed to the team's score. All five All-
Americans return, and this year's highly touted fresh-
man class of Jamie Hertza, Conan Parzuchowski and
Zimmerman will compete next year with a full year of

seasoning and conditioning.
Though Michigan failed to duplicate last year's tri-
umphant 232.55 national championship performance,
they neared the mark this year, scoring a 231.85, despite
missing on 10 of 36 routines. Despite not winning,
Michigan mounted an admirable final rally, making up
a deficit of 1.275 against then-first-place Iowa, and
passing them by .325 in the final results to place second.
"I'm proud of the fight we put up,' Michigan coach
Kurt Golder said.

*Penn State
wins title
Continued from Page 11B
pommel horse performance, Michigan
faltered - Justin Toman and Daniel
Diaz-Luong uncharacteristically missed
routines. As a result, Michigan posted a
low 38.125, falling behind steaming Iowa
after four rotations, 116.85-115.575.
"We've always had one foot on a
banana peel (on the pommel horse),"
Colder said. "We've been very inconsis-
tent all year, but we've usually had one or
two guys bail us out and we would get a
high score. Tonight it did not happen."
With two events remaining, the
Wolverines faced a mountainous deficit.
Summoning its final reserve of courage
and championship desire, Golder's squad
attacked the still rings with the knowl-
edge it needed its absolute best perfor-
nance on rings and vault to win.
" After Kris Zimmerman, Ethan.
Johnson, Kenny Keener, Justin Toman
and Scott Vetere resoundingly hit their
ring routines, the Carver-Hawkeye Arena
crowd saw the Wolverines pull within
.075 of the leading Hawkeyes. The final
event, it seemed, would be a showdown
between Iowa (on the parallel bars) and
Michigan (on the vault) for the champi-
When Scott Vetere nailed a 9.875 on
'Michigan's final vault and Iowa's Todd
Strada fell on the Hawkeyes' final paral-
lel bar routine, it appeared as though
Michigan had won.
The Wolverines defeated Iowa on the
final rotation, 38.825-38.425. Scott
Vetere's vault routine, along with Daniel
Diaz-Luong's 9.7 routine, appeared to be
enough for Michigan to repeat as cham-
As the final results were tabulated fol-
lowing the last rotation, the Wolverines
watched with cautious optimism. But as
soon as they saw Penn State's contingent
explode in joy upon hearing the final
tally, previously hopeful faces on the
Michigan bench fell with disappoint-
Recapping the season, Golder
acknowledged successful accomplish-
ments such as the Wolverines' Big Ten
He also noted this team was stronger
than last year's national title team. For
7iolder, however, the national champi-
onship was the real goal.
"This year had successful parts, but
the ultimate is winning the National
Championship," Golder lamented.

Michigan s'
what if ?
Continued from Page 1B
But what if's don't change anything.
High expectations just mean more
work, and more chance for disappoint-
ment. Often, the only thing that matters
is the end result.
Still, Michigan fans should be proud.
They now have two top gymnastics
programs. A few years ago, Michigan
men's gymnastics was a hobby, now it's
an avenue for Olympic hopefuls and
national champions.
Two events halted Michigan's fourth
down Hail Mary a yard short. But with
lessons learned about high expecta-
tions, along with the air of strong
respect around Ann Arbor and in
recruiting circles, the Wolverines may
be yelling what they really want to yell
- in about two years.
- Mark Fr-ancescutti can be reached at

en I sat down at my comput-
er yesterday to write this col-
umn, I was facing a bit of a
dilemma. The dilemma that was con-
fronting me is common among journal-
ists, but really annoying at the same
My problem?
I had nothing to write
Don't get me wrong, Lost i9
there has been a lot of excite?
stuff going on in the world NIT bas
lately. The college basket- hockey l
ball tournament has been and i
in high gear, as the field of gymnt
64 has dwindled to two - ham
Florida and Michigan Ch.mp s
State. Spi
But I wasn't too fired footb
up over writing about the
Tournament. First of all, it
has been written about to death, and it
would be rather gameless to write anoth-
er column over how this Tournament a)
sucks b) is surprising or c) surprisingly
As for the two combatants battling
tonight in Indianapolis (don't you think
the NCAA could have picked a slightly
more exciting city, such as Muskegon,
to hold the Final Four?), I can't say I'm
a huge fan of either of them.
I guess I could write about how
Michigan State basketball is pure evil,'
but I don't want to give those bastards
more unnecessary press. I've heard
enough about the Spartans for a lifetime
- I wish they would just burn stuff and
leave the rest of civilization alone.
I also could write about Opening Day
in baseball, which normally happens
today. Opening Day is one of the best
days on this sports fan's schedule, as the
crack of the bat and the pop of the glove
is the true indicator of warmer weather
and fun times to come.
Of course, Major League Baseball
had to screw things up and schedule two
games a week before everything else.
While the Cubs and Mets aren't
exactly two of baseball's more success-
ful franchises, the fact that they played
two games against each other in Japan
starting at 5 a.m. sort of defeats the pur-
pose of Opening Day. I really don't
think I have to explain the reasoning
behind that statement.
So because Major League Baseball
decided to mess up my column for this


week, I was at a loss for something to
write about. I guess I could have written
about another one of my weekend
adventures, such as hanging out with
Spiderman at Hash Bash, but that would
be a little ridiculous even for my warped
But just as I was thinking of submit-
ting the text of a Psychology
I I I paper I wrote my fresh-
the man year in this space, i
nt Of remembered spring football.
etbalt, If there's one thing I can
ayoffs always write about, no mat-
,ar ter what time of the year o
tics how drunk I am, it's
sh Michigan football.
Ishps Lost in the excitement of
ng NIT basketball, hockey play-
fi. offs and near gymnastics .
national championships is
spring football. For about
two weeks now, the Wolverines are
rounding back-into form, getting into
shape to prepare themselves for a rough-
and-tumble early-season schedule.
With perennial national power
Bowling Green ready to take on
Michigan in the Big House on Sept. 2,
spring football is essential for the devel-
opment of the club.
All kidding aside, spring football
gives fans and reporters a sneak preview
of what their team is going to look like
in the upcoming season.
Spring football is a time when some
questions are answered and even more
are brought to the surface. This spring,
similar to every other one, questions fol-
low the football team.
Some questions include a) Who is
going to be the backup quarterback, Jon
Navarre or Andy Mingery? b) Who are
Navarre and Mingery? c) Who is going
to play linebacker next year? d) Will
David Terrell be moved to linebacker to
confuse the Bowling Green coaches? e)
Is anyone actually taking Illinois seri-
ously this year?
These questions, and others like it, get
football fans like me very excited. The
higher-ups in sports have found out
ways to ruin the NCAA Tournament
(Michigan State) and Opening Day
(Japan), but until they screw up spring
football, I will be a happy man.
- TJ Berka is thinking ofgiving up his
redshirt year and applving for the NBA
Drafi. If you d draft him, e-mailhim at

Regardless of the bulky knee brace bolstering his right ACL, Michigan captain Justin
Toman tied with teammate Kris Zimmerman for the NCAA title on parallel bars.

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