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February 04, 1991 - Image 13

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The Michigan Daily, 1991-02-04

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The Michigan Daily - Sports Monday - February 4, 1991 - Page 5

FOUR WOLVERINE SWIMMERS SET POOL MARKS
'M' wins in record style

by Andy DeKorte
*'and Ken Sugiura
Daily Sports Writers
EAST LANSING - It probably
was not meant as a pitch, but it
certainly sounded like Michigan
coach Jon Urbanchek was doing his
bit to sell collegiate swimming.
"All in all, that was a good,
exciting meet. That was the way a
dual meet was meant to be. It's fun
''for the spectators," he said of his
team's 134-109 victory over Michi-
gan State Friday night.
Not that it wasn't a "good,
exciting meet." It most certainly
was. The Wolverines spotted the
host Spartans a 50-43 lead after 5
events before storming back, getting
a big boost again from diving coach
Dick Kimball's troops.
Redshirt frosh Eric Lesser
9 claimed the top spot for the
Wolverines on the 1-meter board
with 293.55 points. Senior Steve
Hamerski, recently returned from a
shoulder injury, gave the Maize and

Blue a shot in the arm with a 3-
meter board win, finishing with a
score of 304.05.
"We did what we had to do, and
that's the main thing," Kimball said
of his pupils' disassembling of the
Spartans.
All told, Lesser, Hamerski, and
Jeff Jozwiak totaled a 31-7 advantage
over the Spartan divers.
But, as Urbanchek might tell
you, that wasn't half of the
excitement.
The No. 13 Spartans came into
the meet rested and ready to topple
the No. 3 Wolverines, who were
anything but rested. Urbanchek put
his team through the paces last
week, for many of them the most
arduous of the season.
"It's a tough time for most of us
right now because we're at the end of
our really hard training," junior Eric
Wunderlich said.
However, the Wolverines were up
to the task and ended the meet going
away. In his first dual meet this

season, captain Mike Barrowman led
the way, notching two wins and a
third-place finish.
Swimming the breaststroke leg,
Barrowman teamed with Eric Bailey,
Brian Gunn, and Noel Strauss to
claim first-place in the 400 medley
relay in 3:23.72. Later, in the 200
breaststroke, he won in 2:01.28,
lopping :3.02 off the McCaffree
Pool record in the process.
Barrowman's record was only one
of four set by the Wolverines during
the meet. Junior Eric Namesnik
established the 200 backstroke pool
standard with a clocking of 1:50.34
in addition to taking the 1000
freestyle, hitting the wall in
9:21.06.
The last Wolverine record-setter
was perhaps the most notable.
Sophomore Brian Gunn replaced
Olympic legend Mark Spitz's 19-
year old pool record in the 200
butterfly, stopping the clock in
1:48.50.

MICHEtLLEtUaJi
Michigan swimmer Noel Strauss powers the Wolverines to victory over Michigan State. Four McCaffree Pool
records were set by Michigan swimmers, including one that had been held by Olympic star Mark Spitz.

I

Swimmers continue

by David Kraft
Daily Sports Writer
At the very least, February will
be a less hectic month than
January for the Michigan women's
swimming team. The Wolverines

hope that February will also
produce better results.
Saturday, Michigan (3-0, 6-4
overall) took its first step in the
right direction by convincingly
defeating Indiana (2-5-1, 4-5-1) by

Big Ten d
a 177-121 count in Bloomington.
After a busy January that
included fatiguing road trips to
Hawaii, California, and Texas, and
tough losses to California, Stan-
ford, Texas and SMU - all top
ten teams - the victory over the
Hoosiers was refreshing.
"I think we all did a little better
than expected," sophomore breast-
stroker Jenny Sutton said.
Sutton turned in her season's
best time in the 200-yard breast-
stroke, winning the event with a
time of 2:24.95.
What made Sutton's victory
particularly impressive was that
both Val Hyduk and Tara Higgins
- Michigan's top two breast-
strokers - were kept out of the
meet because of the flu.
Junior Jennifer Love and
Sophomore Missy McCracken join
Hyduk and Higgins as four key
Wolverines who are currently
sidelined by the flu.
"What makes their situation
even worse is that their illnesses
are all respiratory-related," coach
Jim Richardson said. "(Because)
swimming is a sport closely con-
nected with the cardiovascular
system, 'it makes it that much
more diffucult for the injured
swimmers to return effectively."

.1

0 1
n ilin I

With not as much depth this
season as in recent years, Mich-
igan will need to rely considerably
on all of its competing swimmers
when the Big Ten Championships
roll around February 21.
Junior freestyler Michelle Swix
dominated the1650-yard Freestyle
event with a time of 16:47.10,
finishing 19.58 seconds over
second-place Ellen Lucy of In-
diana.
"It was the best mile of her
life," Richardson said.
In the 200-yard Butterfly and
100-yard Breastroke events, soph-
omore Kathy Diebler took top
honors. First-year teammate Karen
Barnes also had an impressive
meet, finishing first in the 200-yard
Freestyle and 100-yard Butterfly
events.
Despite winning 11 of the 16
events, Michigan felt that the
Hoosiers provided good com-
petition.
"Indiana is a strong team -
they came out especially tough in
the beginning," senior captain
Minoo Gupta said.
"The Hoosiers were well pre-
pared and swam an aggressive
meet," Richardson added.
- Lisa Pollak contributed to this
story.

NAMESNIK
Continued from page 1
was champion at the International
Swimming Cup in the 200 and
400-meter I.M. in 1989. Last
summer, he emerged victorious at
the Phillips 66/ U.S. Swimming
Long Course Championships in the
400-meter I.M., claiming the
American record for the first time.
Then, late last year, he was named
runner-up to teammate Mike Bar-
rowman for U.S. Swimming's
Swimmer-of-the-Year.
Namesnik's signature event, the
400-meter I.M., is 100 meters each
of butterfly, backstroke, breast-
stroke, and freestyle. Because the
race entails being able to swim all
four strokes well, Namesnik is one
of the most valuable swimmers on
the Wolverine roster.
"You can put him anywhere
you want him. Whenever the team
needs something we'll put him in
there," Urbanchek said.
Recently, with top backstroker
Steve Bigelow sidelined with an
injury, Namesnik swam in meets
with Stanford and Cal-Berkeley -
and swam an NCAA Champion-
ship-qualifying time in the 200-
yard backstroke against the Golden
Bears. At Michigan State Friday,
still slotted in Bigelow's spot, he
set a McCaffree Pool record in the
same event.
Yet for all of Namesnik's de-
termination and grit, his conduct
away from the pool would suggest
anything but extremely compet-
itive.
As odd as that seems, one only
needs to examine Namesnik's up-
bringing to understand. Listening to
Kathy Namesnik, Eric's mother, it
becomes obvious that the Namesnik
household is one where she and
Eric's father, John, raised Eric and
sister Leesa with hardly a word of
pressure or challenge. It gives the
sense that there were never any,
"You have to win" speeches heard.
"As long as I was having fun and
trying the best that I could, that was,
good enough," Namesnik affirmed.
And he certainly had fun. He
took to swimming, well, like a fish
to water.

Lisa Anderson comp-' s ag ainst MSU on Jan. 18. On Saturday, she set a
Michigan season recd. :n the 200-yard backstroke against Indiana.
Spartans win battle for
,state supremacy

by Robert Siegel
Daily Sports Writer
"The Michigan State match is
**going to be a real tough one,"
Michigan coach Bob Darden said
just before Saturday night's men's
gymnastics meet.
By the time the meet was over,
Darden's comment turned out to be
all too prophetic for the Michigan
squad's liking.
Michigan State more than rose
to the occasion against its arch
rival, easily beating Michigan
.279.25 to 270. The Spartans' score
was the highest point total
compiled by a Big Ten squad this
,year. The loss dropped Michigan's
conference record to 1-2 and raised
Michigan State's to 2-1.
"MSU did outstanding. They hit
everything," Darden said. "Based
on their great performance Friday
against Illinois, we knew we'd
have to have a terrific performance
on Saturday to beat them."
Don't be misled, however.
Michigan did not do poorly against
State. 270 is a good score. It's just
that a 279.25 is a great score.
Michigan got off to a slow start
in the match. In the first event, the
floor exercise, the Wolverines hit
only two of their six routines -
typically, hitting five of six

routines is a good average. Mich-
igan State capitalized on the
Wolverines' mistakes, outscoring
them in the event by two points.
In the second event, the
pommel horse, Michigan again
faltered. Despite a superb 9.7
performance from junior Glen Hill,
the team hit only two of six
routines. By the time the first two
events were over, the Wolverines
found themselves six points down.
In the world of Big Ten
gymnastics, that's a lot.
Michigan went on to lose the
remaining four events, all by much
closer scores. After the match,
Darden was disappointed, but
remained determined to improve.
"This weekend's score was a
real disappointment," Darden said.
"But we are going to throw it out.
We are never going to see a score
of 270 again.
"My confidence level is still
very high. We have a chance to
do very well in the Big Ten even if
we do suffer some early season
losses."

better now as I'm getting better."
So how much better can
Namesnik get? It remains tocbe
seen how high he will ascend, but
it promises to be an interesting
climb. First, there is his meeting
this March with Wharton, the
three-time defending NCAA
champion in the 400-yard I.M. It
would follow that the American
record holder in the meter event
would hold the mark in yards as
well, but that is not the case.
NCAA competition is swum in
25-yard pools, as opposed to the 50-
meter pools of international
competition. A 400-yard event has
eight more turns than its 400-meter
counterpart, so those who are not-as
quick at coming into and pushing off
the wall face a distinct disadvantage.
'(Namesnik) is typical
of a person coming
out of Pittsburgh.
Made out of steel. A
little bit of a blue
collar worker, just
work, work, work'
- Urbanchek
Swimmers like Wharton, who
are better skilled in this facet, can
take advantage of Namesnik's
weakness and, as has been shown
at past NCAA Championships, can
win.
But Namesnik, a third-place
finisher last year and runner-up' to
Wharton two years ago, remains
unfazed: "I'd like to win the 400
I.M.," he succinctly stated.
Concerning the 200 I.M., he
expects to be in the top three. "I
think I can move right in there or
even challenge for first."
Then there is the matter of the
Olympics and D-arnyi. Despite
Darnyi's stronghold on the I.M.
events now, Urbanchek believes
the pecking order -may soon
change.
He feels that Namesnik has yet
to hit his peak and, in fact, is still
green in his development as a
swimmer. Around the time of the
'92 Olympic Games in Barcelona,
Spain, Urbanchek believes 'Snik,
as he is known to teammates,
should be hitting -his stride and be
ready to toe the line against
Damyi.
"He's got the potential to catch
up. He's got some room for
improvement," he said.
Wunderlich can also see Name-
snik rising to the top. "When he's
got something in his mind - for
instance, beating Darnyi - there's
not a whole lot there to standin
his way. He's a very determied
guy," he said.
But even beating Darnyi
wouldn't sate Namesnik's hunger.
"The ultimate goal would be to
win a gold medal at the Olympics.
Not necessarily get a world record
or even an American record. If I
happen to go three seconds slower
than my best time ever in my life,
and I got a gold medal at the
Olympics, that would be far more
a goal than my times."
An ultimate goal for Eric
Namesnik? Hard to believe, isn't

it?

After all,
regular season
really count.

in the Big Ten,
competition doesn't

Jim Round performs on the high bar last week. Saturday, Michigan State
proved to be too much to handle for Round and his teammates.

'You can put him
anywhere you want
him. Whenever the
team needs something
we'll put him in there'
- Jon Urbanchek,
Michigan swimming
coach
"Eric loved it. He just loved the
competition," Mrs. Namesnik re-
called.
The relaxed but supportive
attitude allowed Namesnik to get
into swimming at his ownpace
and avoid burnout. Growing up, he
tried his hand at baseball, soccer,
and cross-country before finally
deciding that the pool was the
route for him.
"That was a good balance. I
didn't just swim: that wasn't just
the only thing I did., I had a lot of
other outlets," he said. "Perhaps I
think that's helped me a little

'M' netters celebrate double sweep despite lineup changes

by Becky Weiss
Daily Sports Writer
Without No. 1 singles player
Christine Schmeidel in good
health, the lineup for the Michigan
women's tennis team looks a lot
different. She played No. 3 in the
Wolverine's matchup with Toledo
Saturday and No. 2 against Bowl-

Kalei Beamon were the third dou-
bles entry.
Despite their lineup problems,
the -Wolverines managed to shut
out both Toledo and Bowling
Green, 9-0. Schmeidel attributes
the two easy wins to the versatility
of the team.
"No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 can

"We wanted to try some new
doubles combinations in the
matches this weekend," said Ritt.
She added that doubles pairings
will depend on the injury situation
as both Jen Lev and Lisa Worz-
niak have been out since Thanks-
giving.
Though the matches with

6-4 victory over Marshack and
Pacella of Bowling Green was a
valuable experience.
"We were practicing coming to
the net and trying different strate-
gies during the match," said
Schmeidel.
Aland's match with Carla Mar-
shack of Bowling Green was the

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