10A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, March 27, 2003
Blue golfers warm
up by traveling south
By Albert Kim
Daily Sports Writer
The name that will never show up on the stat
sheets for the Michigan women's gymnastics team
may have had to work harder than anyone this year.
Athletic trainer Lisa Hass has been with the
since Michigan coach
Bev Plocki took over
13 years ago, and has SATURDAY
had to keep a depth- "v hig>>_> ;<e<B>g :
challenged and injury- Ten Champi:nship
ridden team healthy .
this year. Tfle: 7 p m.
"There's a couple
different times where Huffll u
we've joked and said, *_ _ _
'Lisa's the MVP of
the team,"' Plocki
said. "She'd get my vote."
This year's pressure is nothing new for her, though.
"There's been a few years where there's been quite
a few injuries," Hass said. "Some of those have been
some of our best teams too, because people really
rallied together to get it done. They know that it's
them or nobody."
When Hass first came to Michigan after four
years as head trainer at Dakota Wesleyan, she
knew nothing about gymnastics. But now Plocki
calls her "quite an expert." Her knowledge has
allowed her to model treatments to fit the gym-
nast's needs. The trust level between the coaches
and Hass has gotten to a point where she is often
the one who decides when injured players are
ready to return to action.
"It's gotten to a level of trust between myself and
Lisa that she basically makes the calls on what the
kids do," Plocki said. "Obviously, they'll come and
discuss with me what Lisa's thoughts are, and 99.999
percent of the time, it's whatever Lisa says goes."
Her experience with the team has served as a big
advantage, since she sees gymnasts from the day
they set foot on campus. Consequently, she knows
their injury histories and how best to push them.
One gymnast who has spent more than her fair
By Alex Cummins
For The Daily
With the weather just starting to get
warm, many may wonder how the
Michigan men's golf team has been
keeping its game in check. With sub-
freezing temperatures from most of
December through February, one
might ask where and how the team
gets their cuts in.
"In winter, we practice four times a
week at Miles of Golf, which is a
heated driving range on Carpenter
Road. We also hit wedges in Ooster-
ban Fieldhouse," Michi-
gan coach Andrew Sapp
said. "However, the hard-
est part during the winter SAl
is working on the short Michigar
game because we can't get R wens
a total feel."
The summer is when
the Wolverines are able
to make their biggest C
strides individually and R.
better their games
through amateur events.
y "The season is so busy with
school that it's hard to make swing
n and long-term changes,"'Sapp said
f of his players. "With the great
, weather during the summer, there is
a great opportunity for (the golfers)
d to really play in some great amateur
t events and work on their games so
e they can come out of the box strong
y in the fall."
Fielding no seniors on the squad
t this season, the Wolverines have
e relied on juniors Dave Nichols and
e Scott Carlton to lead the young, but
- "All of our young guys are very
e enthusiastic and are working hard,"
Sapp said. "The team morale is
s pretty high despite all the lumps
, we've taken."
e Competing in tournaments in San
d Juan, Puerto Rico, Myrtle Beach,
S.C. and Citrus Springs, Fla., the
Michigan senior Janessa Grieco has benefited from the hard work of her team's trainer over the past four years.
share of time with Hass is senior co-captain Janessa
Grieco. Four years of gymnastics will wreak havoc
on anyone's body, and training gets frustrating at
times. But Grieco feels that Hass does a great job of
keeping the athletes positive.
"When you have injuries, sometimes that's the per-
son that gets the brunt of the frustration, and she's
always good about keeping things light," Grieco said.
"She is very, very funny. You can go in there in a bad
mood, and she knows how to lift your spirits up. I
think she's one of the best motivators here."
One of the reasons why Hass is so effective is
because she genuinely enjoys the job and the
people she works with. Getting in to work at 7:30
a.m. and sometimes having to stay until 7 p.m.
can wear on anybody, but she feels that it's all
"I really enjoy working with this age group, I think
they're really fun," Hass said. "You certainly see kids
really grow up during their four years.
"In my job, my wins and losses are seeing some-
body go back, compete and have fun doing it agai
after missing a whole season or a significant part o
the season. When they come over and just say, 'Hey
you know, thanks,' that's a big thing."
Hass is a big reason why Michigan has survive
numerous injuries to compete for its fifth straigh
Big Ten title this weekend in Champaign. The
Wolverines have won 10 of the last 11 titles, but they
aren't taking anything for granted.
"I think this year, complacency is certainly no
an issue," Plocki said. "They know what we've
been through this year, they know how hard we've
In order for Michigan to go anywhere this postsea
son, it will need a complete effort from everyone
involved in the program.
The names and faces that aren't seen sometime
are the ones that make a program go. Without them
there would be little glory and fewer wins. And in th
case of the Wolverines, everyone is always reminde
of this, starting at 7:30 in the morning.
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Wolverines have been subjecting
themselves to some of the best com-
petition in the country. As the old
saying goes, you've got to beat the
best, to be the best.
"We're putting ourselves up against
some of the most talented teams in the
country," Sapp said. "I want the guys
to know what it's like to be top 20 in
With the Big Ten schedule about to
get underway onApril 12th, the
Wolverines are in their most crucial
segment of the season as they look for
momentum leading up to the Big Ten
Bloomington the week-
end of May 2.
JRDAY "The main thing for
t hjonny us is we need to devel-
atop leadership and guys
who will follow," Sapp
said. "We need more
consistency. Many guys
x ar'<shoot one or two good
rounds, but they aren't
putting together all
There is little doubt that the
biggest obstacle for all Big Ten
schools is the unfavorable weather
conditions that they have to deal with
for a large portion of the school year.
When playing against schools from
warmer climates like South Carolina,
Florida or Georgia, weaknesses due
to the climate get exposed. But the
Wolverines refuse to fall victim to
"Sure, it's hard going down South
and playing the Southern schools,
but there are no excuses. Every Big
Ten school is on the same boat,"
Sapp said. "Just look at Minnesota,
who won the national championship
last year. Their weather is worse
Michigan heads to Lexington, Ky.
this weekend to take part in the
Johnny Owens Invitational before it
battles it out for the Big Ten crown.
Continued from Page 8A
So when a sniper like the nation's
leading scorer, Colorado College junior
forward Peter Sejna, is streaking into the
Wolverines zone, ready to fire, it will
have to be Montoya whomakes the sea-
son-altering save. It may be a save that
will help determine whether the Wolver-
ines raise their third national title banner
in seven years, or end another season
"He'll be one of the most important
players throughout these playoffs," said
junior defenseman Andy Burnes.
He'll also be the most scrutinized.
And he doesn't mind a bit.
Joe Smith can be reached at
HOUSTON (AP) - Houston Rock-
ets coach Rudy Tomjanovich told his
team in an emotional meeting yesterday
that he will be out indefinitely while
undergoing treatment for bladder cancer.
"I didn't look at him in the face,"
guard Steve Francis said. "It was hard.
Then again, it wasn't like he was on his
sick bed. Coach is really an emotional
guy whether he's telling you you did
something wrong or explaining that he's
not feeling well."
Tomjanovich, 54, was diagnosed on
March 18 with the transitional cell can-
cer on his bladder that doctors said
would be treatable with medication.
Team physician James Muntz said
there had been no change in the diag-
"The only change in his condition is
he's calm, he's optimistic," Muntz said.
"One of the issues that came up was that
treatment should start next week. It
became obvious that his treatments
should come on time and not juggling
something at 10 at night that should
have been done at 3 p.m."
Tomjanovich missed the team's five-
game road trip and had been expected to
rejoin the team for last night's home
game against the Los Angeles Lakers.
Tomjanovich said he realized his return
now wouldn't be practical.
"I believe it's the best thing for the
team' Tomjanovich said. "At this criti-
cal part of the season, this team, any
team, needs a coach who has got to
give 100 percent of his thoughts to
helping the team."
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