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March 15, 1988 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 1988-03-15

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Men's Basketball
vs. Boise State
Thursday, 9 p.m.
Salt Lake City

SPORTS

Women's Tennis
vs. Eastern Michigan
Friday
Ypsilanti

The Michigan Daily

Tuesday, March 15, 1988

Page 7

Bowling Green tops Lake
Superior for CCHA crown

Daily Photo by ELLEN LEVY
Lake Superior State's Brett Barnett, pictured in an earlier game against Michigan, scored four goals in two
games last weekend in the Central Collegiate Hockey Association playoffs. The Lakers lost to Bowling Green
in the championship game, 5-3.
'M' icers should study winners

Character wins championships.
Some teams have it and some
teams don't.
Bowling Green and Lake Superior
State, the teams in the Central Col-
legiate Hockey Association finals
last Saturday, got there because they
have character. Michigan was
noticeably absent.
Character surfaces in important
games, like when injuries set in or
when adversity must be handled.
This past season, the Wolverines
showed none of this.
BOWLING GREEN, the
CCHA playoff champion, showed
character by bouncing back from
early season woes to finish as the
hottest team in the country. After 17
games, the Falcons were 8-8-1, and
struggling in fifth place in the con-
ference. Nine of twenty players on
Bowling Green's roster were not on
the team last season.
Their resurgence started slowly,
with victories over Princeton during
the. holiday season. Then the meta-
morphosis transpired. Starting with
a victory at Maine, the number one
team in the country, the Falcons
brought new meaning to the phrase
"cold steel on ice," winning 16 of
their last 20 games to surge past
Michigan, Western Michigan, and
Michigan State and into second place
at the end of the season.
Lake Superior State, in contrast
to Bowling Green, has been the
front-runner in the CCHA since the
start of the season. With only one
senior on the squad and a first-year
goaltender, the Lakers played a de-
fensive style that led to a 28-4-6
record, the CCHA regular season
championship, and the number-three
ranking nationally.
Both of these teams have battled
sadversity and challenge to get NCAA
bids. Both teams have had problems.
Both teams have had to play difficult
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By JULIE HOLLMAN
Special to The Daily
DETROIT- A hockey team's
success begins with the goalie. Sat-
urday night at Joe Louis Arena this
hypothesis proved to be an accurate
one.
Bowling Green, behind the strong
and gutsy play of goalie Paul Con-
nell, defeated Lake Superior State, 5-
3, and captured the Central Colle-
giate Hockey Association playoff
championship. The Falcons victory
marked only the second time in
seven years that Michigan State did
not gain the playoff crown.
BOWLING GREEN advanced
to the finals by knocking off Michi-
gan State, 6-4, and Lake Superior
moved to championship game by
defeating Western Michigan, 5-4 in
overtime.
Lake Superior head coach Frank
Anzalone thought his team played
well against Bowling Green, but at-
tributed the difference to what hap-
pened by the crease.
"I thought it was a 50-50 game,"
said Anzalone. "We needed the big
saves early and we just didn't get
them. That changed the flow of the
game."
While Laker goalie, Bruce Hof-
fort, was not at his All-CCHA first
team form, his counterpart at the
other end was stealing the show.
CONNELL, the tournament
MVP, led Bowling Green past the
league-champion Lakers by making
28 saves, despite sustaining an in-
jury 5:36 before the end of the first
period. Connell was nailed in the
neck by a slap shot and experienced
trouble swallowing as he laid mo-
tionless on the ice for several min-
utes.
He managed to continue, but al-
, t
PASS
IT

lowed Brett Barnett to score off a re-
bound with a little over two minutes
left. Barnett's goal marked his fourth
of the tournament and helped him
earn a spot on the all-tournament
team. Bowling Green came right
back though, as Mark Potvin poked
one in from the top of the crease to
put the Falcons back ahead by two.
Lake Superior cut the margin
when Tim Harris scored on a break-
away. Less than a minute latter,
Hoffort helped the comeback cause
by making a tremendous save to
thwart a three-on-one rush by Bowl-
ing Green.
However, the momentum took
another swing when Chad Authur
slid in an unassisted goal after Lake
Superior failed to clear the puck out
of its zone for several minutes.
DOWN 4-3 late in the final pe-
riod, the Lakers pulled their goalie
but couldn't capitalize on the man
advantage. Instead, after Hoffort

stepped back in, Bowling Green
scored again to put away the win.
The win ensured Bowling Green a
bid in the NCAA tournament. "Early
in the season we were developing
slowly but since the Maine tourna-
ment we've really come on as a
club," said Falcon head coach Jerry
York. "I think we have a genuine
chance for a national title."
Lake Superior, as a playoff final-
ist and based on its season perfor-
mance, will also receive a bid, but
Anzalone was not sure what other
considerations his team would get.
Said Anzalone, "When you win a
league championship over a course
of 32 very rugged games, and if we
think this is the best league in the
United States, then certainly win-
ning the league championship
should be considered something of a
hurrah and that should earn us a bye
in the first round."
EVIDENTLY, someone on the
NCAA committee agreed with
Anzalone's views. Yesterday, the
NCAA announced the pairings and
the Lakers received a bye.
Michigan State will be the third
team representing the CCHA in the
national tournament. The Spartans
will play at Harvard, and Bowling
Green will host Vermont, Friday and
Saturday in a pair of two-game, to-.
tal-goals series.
In the second round, the Michi an
State-Harvard winner will play Mn-
nesota; the Bowling Green-Vermont
winner will play at Maine; and Lake
Superior will host the winner of the
Merrimack-Northeastern contest. The
other three schools rounding out the
12-team field are Wisconsin, which
will play Lowell in the first round,
and St. Lawrence, which will host
the winner of that game.

Adam

S

Rib

BY ADAM SCHRAGER

schedules. And both teams have
character.
MICHIGAN, on the other
hand, has had adversity, problems,
and a difficult schedule. But the dif-
ference between the Wolverines and
the Lakers and Falcons, is that
Michigan does not have an NCAA
berth due to its lack of character.
Michigan lost its most important
games this season, including the 10-
0 drubbing handed to them by West-
ern Michigan in the third and decid-
ing game of the quarter-final playoff
round two weekends ago.
What about the series against
Lake Superior State at home, where
the Wolverines needed to win one
game in order to hold fourth place
and maintain their home-ice advan-
tage in the playoffs. The Wolverines
were swept.
What about the last series of the
year against Bowling Green, where
Michigan needed to sweep the Fal-
cons in order to play at home in the
quarter-final round of the playoffs.
The Wolverines, after winning on
the road Friday night, lost at home.
on Saturday.
AND FINALLY, there was the
playoff series at Western Michigan,
where Michigan had only won once
in five seasons. Michigan won the
first game, 5-4 and were leading
early in the second game before real-
ity set in. The Wolverines proceeded
to lose Saturday night, 4-3, before
Sunday's embarrassing loss.
Blame can be given to many
people, but head coach Red Beren-
son, not the players, must answer
for the end result.
The lack of experience cannot be
given as an excuse because Michigan
had five seniors on their roster. Out.
of the four teams at Joe Louis
Arena, only Bowling Green had
more seniors (six) than Michigan.
Michigan State, Lake Superior
- I

State, and Western, on the other
hand, all had less.
The lack of talent cannot be given
as an excuse because if Berenson's
word can be taken seriously, then
Michigan has as much talent as
anyone in the league.
AND THE lack of competition
cannot be given as an excuse because
the Wolverines have played all four
semifinal teams at least four times
this season. Michigan went 3-4
against Western, 3-1 against State,
0-4 against runner-up Lake Superior,
and 2-2 against champion Bowling
Green.
None of the goals the Wolverines
set for themselves at the start of the
season were fulfilled. Berenson
hoped to end up in fourth place in
the regular season, finish in the fi-
nals of the team's two invitationals,
and make it to Joe Louis Arena. The
result was a big goose egg.
What was the problem? If Michi-
gan was talented, experienced, and
competition-tough, then what hap-
pened?
The lack of character is once
again evident. Without a boost of
character in the near future, the
Wolverines will forever end up
watching the CCHA playoffs as they
did on Saturday night.
"I think we accomplished a lot
this season," Berenson said after the
hapless season-ending performance.
"The real Michigan team showed up
Friday and Saturday nights, not
tonight. That was the shame."
A shame indeed.

- Am
Connell
... Playoff MVP

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