The Wolverine

February 2020*

The Wolverine: Covering University of Michigan Football and Sports

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FEBRUARY 2020 THE WOLVERINE 65 BY CLAYTON SAYFIE F our more Michigan Olympic sports are set to begin their seasons in early February. We preview their up- coming campaigns and recap the latest Wolverine happenings outside of foot- ball and men's basketball: MEN'S GOLF First Event: Feb 7-8 in the Big Ten Match Play Championship (Palm Coast, Fla.) Coach's Expectations: "Ultimately as a team, our goal is to win the Big Ten championship," head coach Zach Barlow said. "That won't change, year in and year out, because I'm a firm be- liever that if you win the Big Ten cham- pionship, you are a contender for the national championship. "We expect to build momentum every week, whether that be on short game, their swings or just competing. We're trying to build it throughout the spring." Top Athlete: Junior Charlie Pilon is U-M's only returning golfer to have started all 10 events last season. He re- corded four top-25 individual finishes with a season-best third-place showing at the Big Ten Championships, earning himself a spot on the All-Big Ten Tour- nament Team. "I expect big things from him this spring," Barlow said. "But I think we're a deep team, even though we're a team of eight. I think we're very talented top to bottom, and our biggest asset is strength in numbers." Athlete To Watch: Sophomore Pat- rick Sullivan stated seven events last year, after missing the first three due to injury. He averaged a score of 75.50 per round, with three below-par rounds on the year. "He's got a lot of potential," Barlow said. "He's very athletic. He hits the ball a long way. I think he's a guy that could bust out and win at any moment, but he also has to continue to get bet- ter." Don't Miss: March 7-8 at Desert Mountain Intercollegiate, held in Scott- sdale, Ariz., but hosted by Michigan. MEN'S LACROSSE First Event: Feb. 8 at Cleveland State Coach's Expectations: "The expecta- tions are that we just show up every day with a positive mindset and the idea that we're not going to be perfect, but we're going to go ahead and try to get better every single day," head coach Kevin Conry said. "We talk very little about big, lofty goals, and we talk very much about the present. "Trusting that process is what really makes great teams, but it also takes a lot of pressure off." Top Athlete: Senior midfielder Avery Myers had 24 goals and 10 assists last season, earning him the honor of team MVP. He enters his senior season with 53 career points, which ranks No. 9 in program history. "We can see the emerging leadership talent of Avery," Conry said. "Bringing him back, he's been a lot more confi- dent, a lot more comfortable, and his presence has really been felt, especially by the younger guys." Athlete To Watch: Graduate student midfielder Peter Hollen is in his sixth year of college. He played for the Wol- verines last season after transferring from USC. A year ago, he played in every game and totaled 15 ground balls with seven forced turnovers. "He'll play in every game for us," Conry said. "We're excited about his contribution, but he doesn't get a lot of press. I think Avery Myers will be our MVP on the field, but I think Peter Hollen will be our overarching MVP." Don't Miss: April 24 at Ohio State, a preseason top-15 squad nationally. WOMEN'S LACROSSE First Event: Feb. 9 at Jacksonville Coach's Expectations: "Expectations are pretty high, to be honest, with what we were able to accomplish last year [when the squad made its first-ever NCAA Tournament]," head coach Hannah Nielsen said. "Being the com- petitive person that I am, it's only natu- ral that we want to be better than we were last year. "I really think we have the group that's going to be able to do that. We return 80 percent of our starters from last year." Top Athlete: Senior midfielder Molly Garrett scored 29 goals last year, in- cluding three game-winners. She also led the team with 65 draw control vic- tories, which ranks second all time in Michigan single-season history, and added 26 ground balls and 23 forced turnovers. "She had a breakout year the last two years," Nielsen said of her senior captain. "She's just been growing and growing and growing. I think if you follow our games, her name will be one that pops up a lot."   OLYMPIC SPORTS UPDATE Four More U-M Teams Are Ready To Build Off Last Season's Successes Junior Charlie Pilon was named to the All-Big Ten Tournament team last year, after he placed a season-best third at the conference championships. PHOTO COURTESY MICHIGAN PHOTOGRAPHY

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