U fullback Evans faces assault charge

Aaron Kirscht

Minnesota running back Byron Evans is accused of assaulting a former girlfriend, his second arrest in four months.
Evans, 22, a redshirt junior from Texas City, Texas, pleaded innocent last month in Hennepin County District Court to fifth-degree assault and damage to property. His next court appearance is set for Aug. 25.
He was arrested July 3 after the St. Paul woman, who police said was the mother of Evans’ two children, called authorities. The woman told police Evans shoved her and slightly dented her car with his fists and body. A police report said she did not need medical treatment.
Evans also was arrested May 9 by University Police and later pleaded guilty to drunken driving. He was sentenced to 30 days in the workhouse and fined $500, but 28 days and $450 were stayed as part of his probation, according to court records.
Mark Dienhart, Minnesota athletic director, said Wednesday he and coach Glen Mason were aware of the arrests and Evans has been disciplined, but would not elaborate.
“We are obviously very disappointed in that type of behavior,” Dienhart said.
A University media relations official said Friday that a statement on the situation will be issued shortly.
Mariucci to host regional
The NCAA announced Wednesday that the University will host the 2000 NCAA Men’s Ice Hockey West Regional on Mar. 24-25, 2000 at Mariucci Arena.
The successful bid marks the first time the Gophers have hosted a hockey regional since the NCAA went to the current 12-team format in 1992.
Minnesota set a record last season as the first NCAA school to average more than 10,000 fans per home game during the regular season, including a game at Target Center.
The 2000 NCAA championship will be held in Providence, R.I., on Apr. 7-9, 2000.
Volleyball opens camp
The Minnesota volleyball team opened training camp Thursday as part of its two-week trip to Japan. The Gophers departed for Akita, Japan, on Tuesday and will return on Aug. 27.
The Gophers, 23-10 last season, will train at the Minnesota State University-Akita, the University’s sister school in Japan. They’ll train with and scrimmage against Japanese university teams and the equivalent of a junior national team.
“We will be training and competing in a volleyball environment that is very different from ours,” said coach Mike Hebert, who is entering his third season at Minnesota. “The Japanese play a much faster tempo than we do and are significantly more skilled, especially in the area of ball control. We are hoping the style of Japanese volleyball will rub off on us and prepare us to take on the very tough Big Ten conference.”
The Gophers open the season Sept. 1 against Wisconsin-Green Bay, and face Penn State — the defending Big Ten champion and preseason No. 1 team in the nation — in the conference opener Sept. 25.
Chicoine advances
Gophers senior Tom Chicoine of Neenah, Wis., beat Andre DeOliveira of Boca Raton, Fla., 6-2, 7-6 (7-5) Wednesday in the third round of the Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) National Summer Championships in Urbana, Ill.
Chicoine, the No. 1 seed in the tournament, will play Adam Seri of Audobon, Penn., in Friday’s quarterfinals. Seven of the eight top seeds are still in the tournament.
Soccer ranked No. 15
The Gophers women’s soccer team is ranked No. 15 in preseason polls conducted by both the National Soccer Coaches Association of America and Soccer Buzz magazine. Last season, Minnesota finished with an 18-3-2 record and a final national ranking of No. 13.
The Gophers will have all but two players back from the Big Ten championship-winning team that went 9-0 in conference play. Those two players, however, are Jennifer Walek and Jennifer McElmury, the all-time leading scorers in team history.
The polls are split on the top spot, as defending national champion North Carolina is No. 1 by the NSCAA and Soccer Buzz has Santa Clara as the top-ranked team.