The Michigan Daily-Sunday; January 20, 1980-Page 9
(Continued from Page 1)
uch in contention for a post-season
"We're just thrilled to death," said
ichigan coach Johnny Orr, following
e game. "We just never gave up.
"NOT TOO many people thought we
ould pull this thing off," said Orr. "But
before the game, I told the players that
this game was just like last year's vic-
tory over Michigan State, And with all
respect to the Buckeyes, they can't be
as good as they (Michigan State)
A much more subdued Eldon Miller
brushed off speculation that his highly-
anked Buckeyes took Michigan too
"We knew Michigan was a very good
team. They've just lost some tough
games on the road. They just worked
harder than we did and deserved to
A. MAJOR explanation for the
Wolverine's success was their ability to
put the ball in the hole and rebound with
unusual consistency. The Wolverines
had not been able to have a better
hooting percentage than their op-
ponent in their previous eight outings.
Moreover, they'd been out-rebounded
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in four of their last five games.
"We're supposed to be a good
shooting team," said assistant coach
Bill Frieder, "and yet our opponents
have a higher percentage."
But yesterday it was another story.
Michigan shot an excellent 52 per cent
against a Buckeye squad whose op-
ponents average only 41 per cent.
AND DESPITE Ohio State's two-to-
three inch height advantage at each
position, Michigan out-rebounded the
Playing one of his finest games as a
Wolverine, 6-8 junior center Paul
Heuerman held his own and at times
outplayed Ohio State's much-heralded
pivotman, Herb Williams.
The 6-10 Williams came into the game
averaging 20 points and 8.4 rebounds
per game, rarely got a chance to exploit
his All-Big Ten talents against Heuer-
man. Williams was held to only 17 poin-
ts and five rebounds.
HEUERMAN ON the other hand,
pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds
and contributed nine points. He's now
led the Wolverines in rebounding in the
last five games.
"Heuerman has really come on," sai
Frieder. "He's proving to be one of the
Big Ten's top players."
Other players of note in yesterday's
win were sophomore forward Thad
Garner and junior guard Johnny John-
son. Garner hit on 8-13 shots for 19 poin-
ts. Johnson, substituting for Keith
Smith after the first nine minutes of
play, played perhaps his finest game of
the year, sinking 7-12 shots from the
field for 17 points and pulling down six
THE BALL started bouncing
Michigan's way from the opening
tipoff. Trailing 4-2 in the second minute
of play, the Wolverines scored six
unanswered points, propelling them in-
to a lead they kept for the next ten
With the Wolverines scrapping for
everything they could get and the
Buckeyes missing numerous layups
and short jumpers, Michigan held onto
the lead until freshman sensation Clark
Kellogg pumped in a 12-footer with 7:20
left in the first half to give Ohio State a
Michigan quickly regained the lead
on a pair of Johnson free throws and
held onto that advantage until a little
over two minutes were left in the first
LEADING 36-34, Orr took
precautious measures in replacing
Heuerman who had two fouls on him,
with freshman Ike Person with 2:19 left
in the first half.
But instead of the Buckeyes taking
advantage of Heuerman's absence,
Michigan pumped in six, straight points
including a controversial Garner tip-in
at the buzzer to take a commanding 42-
34 lead to the dressing room.
Michigan saw their eight-point lead
dwindle in the opening moments of the
second half as the Buckeye's went on a
6-1 scoring barrage to close the deficit
THE WOLVERINES opened their
lead to four points, 58-54, with 7:26 left
in regulation time, on a beautiful
behind-the-back pass from Garner un-
der the boards to McGee for a layup.
McGee's 23 points equalled his season
average and moves him into sixth place
on Michigan's all-time scoring list with
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By ALAN FANGER
As I hurriedly escaped the mob of people who converged on the Crisler
Arena tunnel following Michigan's impressive 75-74 a in over second-rated
Ohio State, I heard several fans react in disbelief, to the seat-squirming con-
"It's a miracle," gasped on Wolverine supporter.
"Impossible," said the mannext to him.
All at once, this seemed puzzling. A "miracle" is an event that defies ex-
planation. A more liberal interpretation would classify it as an event that
goes unpredicted by all witnesses.
But there was nothing miraculous about the Wolverines' play yesterday.
The just followed Johnny Orr's instructions, which were fairly straightfor-
"w e'wanted to.. sag off (Carter) Scott, try and play (Kelvin) Ransey
tight, and Williams with a lot of help," Orr continued. Williams made only 7
of 15 shots; he was shooting over 60 per cent in conference games. Ransey
made good on only 7 of 16 attempts.
These results have been achieved in other games. Orr wanted Paul
Heuerman and Thad Garner to shadow Minnesota's sharpshooting forward,
Kevin McHale. McHale ended going to the hoop only 11 times. Pressure was
applied to Purdue's Joe Barry Carroll, and for the first 30 minutes of that
game, the 7-2 pivotman was confined by the Michigan detense.
The best method of assessing the cagers' performance 15 games through
the season is looking at their on-court potential. In some games, such as
Illinois, that potential has gone untapped; the inside containment, shot
selection, and intensity of pursuit all mysteriously disappeared. But yester-
day, Orr had his troops utilizing those skills to the maximum.
That "readiness" was displayed several times during the second half.
Garner and Johnny Johnson were taking higher-percentage shots. Passes
were thrown cautiously and with more authority. And Mark Lozier remem-
bered how to shoot a free throw, just at the critical moment.
"It was a good team effort. We played well," said Mike McGee, who had
one of his "standard" 23-point games. "We just calmed down more and set-
tled down the play, that's all."
No, this was certainly not a miracle. Even the patented Michigan
comebck, which was launched against Toledo, Marquette, Indiana, and
Purdue, was not needed yesterday. At one point, the Wolverines opened up a
seven-point lead against the second-ranked team in the nation, but one which
many coaches felt should be ranked number one.
"They (Michigan) neutralized our size by playng very hard," said
Buckeye coach Eldon Miller: "Size is misleading. Position is what counts."
What Michigan got yesterday, and what it will continue to depend on in
the coming weeks, is a team effort. Heuerman summarized it best when he
said, "We're just getting older.. . we're maturing. We know we can't go out
one-on-one. We'll get our butts kicked."
Nobody has kicked Michigan's butt thus far. And if the Wolverines can
maintain their intensity and perform as their mentor decrees, they aren't
liable to be blown out of any arena. Even St. John's Arena in Columbus,
cagers celebrate win
By SCOTT M. LEWIS
Johnny Orr, the 52-year-old, usually
sedate dean of Big Ten coaches, leaped
off the bench, ran to midcourt, and led
the courtside Crisler Arena crowd in a
And why shouldn't Orr have been
celebrating? His Wolverines yesterday
pulled off perhaps the biggest college
basketball upset of the season to date, a
75-74 thrilling overtime win over Big
Ten leader and number-two ranked
The victory, played before a full-
house gathering of 13,609, snapped a
three-game losing streak and hiked
Michigan's conference record to 3-3,
two games behind the Buckeyes' 5-1.
"Well, that was a good one, a great
win for us," understated an exhausted
Orr moments after the game. "Our kids
are gutty kids, aren't they? One good
thing we've done so far is come back
time and time again. It was a great
team win. We can't win it any other
Orr singled out the performances of
Thad Garner, Mark Lozier, Johnny
Johnson and Mike McGee.
Garner played his finest game of the
season, scoring 19 points, including
eight of 13 field goals. His most impor-
tant basket came with 1:21 left and
Michigan leading, 74-72. Garner drib-
bled the ball for almost 20 seconds, cir-
cling the forecourt, before finding a
crack in the OSU zone and driving for
an uncontested layup.
"They (the Buckeyes) were trying to
spread it out," explained the
sophomore forward. "They wanted one
of the big men to handle the ball. I saw
the opening and took it."
Garner said the Wolverines didn't
feel any tension entering yesterday's
contest. "There was no pressure on
us," he said. "All we had to do was have
some fun. We're still battling in there
(the Big Ten race). Folks will be
looking out for us now."
Lozier, the senior guard who directed
the offense in the final minutes, missed
three of four free throws in the over-
time session, one of the attempts barely
grazing the bottom of the net before
bouncing out of bounds.
But with 11 seconds remaining and
the Wolverines leading by two, he sank
one of two from the line, icing the vic-
Lozier recalled, "I riccocheted the
first one off the back of the rim. On the
second I tried to compensate and air-
balled it. It's the first time I ever
missed a free throw by that much. The
third one went in (barely) and the four-
th was too long," said Lozier, who con-
siders himself a 75 per cent foul
Johnson had his second straight
productive outing off the bench, hitting
seven of 12 shots, most from long range,
en route to 17 points. The sharpshooting
guard-forward is slated for an increase
in court time, said Orr.
McGee, whose offense is so important
to the Michigan attack, seems to have
escaped from the throes of a recent
scoring slump, earning game scoring
honors with 23 points. In addition, his
defensive work was splendid, holding
prize OSU freshman Clark Kellogg to 14
points and battling for nearly every
Perhaps the happiest face outside the
Wolverine locker room yesterday
belonged to freshman Joe James. When
asked why the win was extra special for
him, James replied, "Hey, I'm from
Ohio (Youngstown). If we would have
lost this game, I would have heard
about it when I went back home."
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