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May 21, 1997 - Image 14

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 1997-05-21

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14 -The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, May 21, 1997
Zahn satisfied with Big Ten title

By Keyin Kasiborski
Daily Sports Writer
All dressed up with no place to go.
That's how the Michigan baseball
team must feel this week. The
Wolverines compiled a 34-20 record and
captured their first Big Ten title since
1989.
However, the Big Ten's automatic
berth in the NCAA regional goes to the
winner of the conference tournament -
not the regular season champion. Ohio
State earned that bid by defeating the
Wolverines, 8-5, on Saturday in the Big
Ten tournament final. Michigan was not
extended one of the 24 at-large bids when
the pairings were announced Monday.
Ironically, it was Michigan's 4-3 victo-
ry over Ohio State on May 10, in the sec-
ond-to-last game of the regular season,
that clinched the regular-season title for
the Wolverines.
Zahn congratulated the Buckeyes
after Saturday's game and wished them
well in the regional, but added that his
team also deserves to keep playing.
"I auldn't be prouder of our men on

this club," Zahn said. "They have come a
long way and have worked hard. To me,
they deserved an at-large bid in the
regional tournament"
Michigan began its season on Feb. 21
with a loss to Alabama. After losing their
first four games, the Wolverines won
nine in a row, and in the process won the
Rollins tournament in Winter Park, Fla.
The Wolverines entered Big Ten play
with a 9-7 record. They opened the con-
ference schedule by splitting a four-
game series at Purdue.
Michigan jump-started its quest for the
Big Ten crown by sweeping Penn State
in the second weekend of Big Ten play.
In the ensuing weekends, the
Wolverines split two games with
Minnesota, swept Northwestern, dropped
three out of four from Indiana, and took
three out of four from Michigan State.
. That set up the showdown on the final
weekend of the regular season between
first-place Michigan and second-place
Ohio State. The Wolverines and
Buckeyes split four games, giving
Michigan the title.

"Michigan has a great tradition in
baseball and this team has gone a long,
long way to start to bring that tradition
back," Zahn said. "After being in"last
place two years ago, this year we win the
Big Ten."
In addition to their regular-season
championship, the Wolverines have also
picked up some individual awards.
Zahn was named Big Ten coach of the
year. Junior relief pitcher Tyler Steketee,
junior outfielder Derek Besco and
sophomore outfielder Jason Alcaraz
were namedto the All-Big Ten first team.
Sophomores Mike Cervenak, Bryan
Besco and Bolby Scales, along with
freshman pitcher Bryan Cranson, were
named to the All-Big Ten second team.
Second baseman Kirk Beermann and
relief pitcher Marion Wright are the only
seniors on Michigan's roster. The nucle-
us of this team will be back next season.
"These guys will remember what it
was like to win the Big Ten champi-
onship, and the letdown of (Saturday),"
Zahn said. "And they will be better off
for it.'

JOE WESTRTttDaily
Michigan middle reliever Matt Herr picked up a victory this past weekend for the
Wolverines in the Big Ten tournament. Michigan lost the title game to Ohio State, 8-5.

INTRAMURAL
SPORTS
PROGRAM
UPCOMING ACTIVITIES
GOLF Entries Taken: until Weds 6/4 2:00pm IMSB (Main Office)
Entry Fee: $15.00 per team (excluding Course Fee)
Tee Times: 11:00am-1:00pm (Two-person Team Scramble]
Toumament Date: Friday June 6 at U of M Golf Course
TENNIS Entries Taken: until Thurs 5/29 2:00pm IMSB (Main Office)
(Sgls & Dbls) Entry Fee: $5 Singles/$9 for Doubles
Toumament Format: Double Elimination (depending on #'s)
Tournament Dates: Sat & Sun 5/31 & 6/1 (Palmer Courts @ CCRB)
REMINDER:
The Intramural Sports Program offers, during the Summer Term,
Softball, Sand Volleyball, 3-on-3 Basketball
(Entries Taken for the above Wednesday July 2),
Tennis - Singles and Doubles and
Golf - two-person scramble.
OFFICIATING OPPORTUNITIES
Officials Needed
Summer Term SOFTBALL
Summer Term SOFTBALL clinic begins:
7:00pm
Tuesday July 1.
For Additional Information Contact:
Intramural Sports Program IMSB 606 E. Hoover 763-3562
http://www.recsports.umich.edu

BIG TENS
Continued from Page 13
The Buckeyes, on the contrary,
exploded for four runs in the bottom of
the fourth against Michigan starter
Brian Berryman. Ohio State leftfielder
Jason Driscoll blasted a solo home run.
The next six consecutive batters reached
base.
But the story of the game was Ohio
State middle reliever Mike Stafford.

"I live 10 miles from here and
Michigan never recruited me," Stafford
said. "(Ohio State) coach Todd took a
chance on me.
"To beat Michigan feels good."
Relieving Ohio State starter Kurt
Fullenkamp in the fifth inning, the
junior from Canton effectively shut
down Michigan's potent offense.
In 4 2/3 innings of work, Stafford
held Michigan to one run on one hit
while striking out three. Only the hot-

hitting Bryan Besco was able to get a
hit and score a run against the
sidearmer.
One possible explanation for the
offensive breakdown is fatigue. Th4
Wolverines played just an hour before
Michigan's final encounter with Ohio
State. Michigan sent Fighting Illini
home, 7-5.
Playoff champion Ohio State received
an automatic bid to the NCAA regionals
and visits Mississippi State tomorrow

Softball heads to WCWS - again,

BATTERY
Continued from Page 13
contest, they knocked Holmes around for two runs in the
eighth, snapping Michigan's 17-game winning streak and
Holmes' personal 23-game victory run.
While two runs in one inning may not seem like domination,
against Holmes, on this weekend it was catastrophic. She
rolled through Michigan's first 2 1/2 games as if allowing runs
was an NCAA violation.
Holmes peaked in the winner's bracket contest against
Central. After the Chippewas easily beat Michigan State on
Friday, they had trouble offensively against Michigan on
Saturday. Maybe Central was tired.
Or maybe Holmes was just that good.
After the leadoff batter in Saturday's contest singled, Holmes
didn't allow another baserunner -for the entire game. She
retired 21 straight as Michigan coasted to a 3-0 win.
So, after the Chippewas knocked off Michigan in the first
game Sunday, Holmes and Smith faced their personal road
less-traveled.
But, as championship players do, they responded.
Holmes, the Region 6 most valuable player, buckled down,
holding Central Michigan scoreless the rest of the way.
Smith, also named to the All-Region team, guided Holmes
as a catcher should, calling for Holmes to "hit her spots."
As the victor of Region 6, the Wolverines earned their third-
straight trip to the Women's College World Series. And Central
- the only team to beat Michigan in Ann Arbor in the last two
seasons - had to return home.
In Mt. Pleasant, home of the Chippewas, the most popular
attraction may be the Soaring Eagle Casino, where gamblers
lose thousands every day.
But good money says if Holmes and Smith were to visit the
college town, they would come home with their pockets full.
As this weekend showed, they're at their best when the
Chips are down.

REGIONAL
Continued from Page 13
Michigan received the only run it would need in the top of
the second. Mika led off with a single and scored from third on
a sacrifice fly by Jen Smith. The Wolverines scored insurance
runs in the fourth and sixth, but they were not necessary.
"Kelly Holmes pitched a great game," Hutchins said. "You
can't ask for much more than that - except maybe a no-hitter."
Sunday, Michigan got on the board in the first game with
run in the second when centerfielder Lisa Kelley knocked in
Melissa Gentile. Central knotted the score with a run in the
fifth, and the seventh inning ended with the score tied.
In the top of the eighth, the Chippewas scored twice.
Michigan was unable to score in its half of the inning and the
Wolverines' 17-game winning streak ended.
With atrip tothe WCWS on the line, Michigan and Central
Michigan took the field under darkening skies for the finale.
The Wolverines struck first with a run in the top of the third.
Before the fourth, the light rain turned into a downpour and
the game was suspended. After 31 minutes, the rain subsided
and the teams took the field again.
Michigan returned fired up. The Wolverines pushed their
lead to 4-0 with three runs in the top of the seventh.
Second baseman Jessica Lang led off the inning with a sin-
gle. The only problem was that Smith should have led off and
was accidentally skipped. But Central failed to catch the error
in time, and the play stood. After the Wolverines loaded the
bases, Davie delivered a three-run double to seal the victory.
Michigan now heads to Oklahoma City to compete in the
WCWS for the third straight year. In each of their last two
appearances, the Wolverines have failed to win a game, each
time losing to Iowa to end their season. Although its first
round opponent will be Iowa, Michigan does not plan on leav-
ing Oklahoma City without a fight.
"We're not going out there to win one game," Holmes said.
"We're going out to win the whole thing."

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