vs. Central Michigan
Friday, 7 p.m.
Friday, 7:30 p.m.
The Michigan Daily
Thursday, September 29, 1988
THE SPORTING VIEWS
BY STEVEN COHEN
The other night I had this dream, no not a dream, a
nightmare. I kept seeing these visions, these recurring
images. And I kept hearing Dick Enberg say "It looks
like its over for the United States basketball team."
I kept seeing zero points next to Danny Manning's
name in a box score. Zero points by the NCAA Player
of the Year! But worst of all, I kept seeing the
scoreboard flash like a neon light, U.S.S.R. 82, U.S.A.
But the next morning I realized this wasn't a
nightmare or the Twilight Zone. Reality sunk in. I am
now a self-divided. On the one hand I think the Soviets
played well and deserve credit, but on the flip side, I
think the United States made it easy.
The United States losing in Olympic basketball?
That happened only once before, in 1972 in Munich,
and to be honest with you, I never really counted that
game in the first place - faulty time keeping. Any
game that needs to have the last second replayed twice
so the Soviets can win is really a sham anyway.
AND YOU know what really bugs me is that we
not only made a Soviet victory easy, but we helped.
Why are fixing the Achilles tendon of the Soviet
basketball player, 7-foot-4 inches, Arvydas Sabonis. It's
really great to see that glasnost has come to America.
Thanks a lot, Portland Trailblazers, thanks a million
Ted (America's Game) Turner.
Soviet coach Alexander Gomelski acknowledged his
debt to the Americans after the Soviet victory.
"United States basketball and NBA basketball helps
my country," said the coach in his broken english. "I
am very happy. Thank you United States basketball."
Wait a minute. What am I saying? Who am I, Harry
Truman, Joe McCarthy, Archie Bunker?
This is crazy. This is just basketball, a sporting
event, not World War III. The efforts of those in the
NBA who try to integrate Soviet stars probably are
promoting world peace and good will.
But then again maybe John Thompson was right in
his paranoia. Maybe we did give the U.S.S.R. the rope
to hang us with. Maybe nice guys do finish last.
I have trouble coping with all this. When I think of
basketball I think of Springfield, Mass. and the Hall of
Fame, the Boston Celtics, the Los Angeles Lakers. I
think of Air Jordan. The last thing I needed to see was a
bunch of foreigners walk away with a victory in our
game. Let the Bulgarians have weight lifting, give the
Chinese table tennis, but please keep that basketball
gold medal in the good ole U.S.A.
BUT I must deal with the sad reality of the
situation. The United States lost and now they will play
U.S. hands over
the loser of Yugoslavia and Australia for the bronz6
John Thompson is a proven coach, but he is not
immune to the big upset. Villanova stunned his
Georgetown team in 1985. But at least an American
team was still the winner. This year, his monastic
coaching style didn't do the trick.
Winning the gold was supposed to be a foregone
conclusion. But the rest of the world is catching up with
the Americans. In a series this summer the Atlanta
Hawks split a two-game series with the U.S.S.R. O.K,
so maybe if we sent in Jordan, Larry, Magic, and
Dominique, we would have cleaned house, but we still
could have, and should have defeated the Soviets.
The Soviets average Olympic height was 6-feet-8
inches, and they did have some good shooters such as
Sharaunus Marchulenius, who scored 19 points, and
Rimas Kourtinaitus, who scored 28 points. But the
Americans, who had a deep, quick, defensive team, were
unable to press the Soviets effectively. They were
unable to get into their running game and fell victim to
the experience of their opponents.
THE LOSS of the great shooter, Hersey Hawkins,
hurt the Americans, but, nonetheless, they didn't take
advantage when they should have. The Soviet's best
player, Marchulenius, had four fouls in the second half.
The U.S.A. should have taken the ball to him, and
fouled him out much earlier.
Instead, the Soviets played a half court game and
Danny Manning sat on the bench in foul trouble for
most of the game. It seemed questionable that Manning
should sit for all but two minutes in the first half
because he had two fouls. When he came in, he tried to
do too much and failed.
Maybe it was foolish for Thompson to try to mold
the Olympic team into a Georgetown type team. With
only a few months to train, the Americans were unable
to master the pressing defense his system required. Th%
cornerstone of the U.S. strategy was there trapping full-
court press. The Soviets broke this with relative ease.
The Americans pressed near the end, but it wasn't
enough as Kourtinaitus was able to score two easy
baskets to seal the victory.
The unthinkable has happened. Maybe its not so bad
after all. We lost fair and square, not in a circus like that
of 1972. And we still have an 85-2 record in Olympic
basketball to be proud of.
Maybe its time to give credit to the Soviets for
playing a great game and defeating the best collegians
our country had to offer at our own game.
Jessica Rizzolo clears the ball during Michigan's 2-0 loss to Schoolcraft College at Mitchell
Field, yesterday afternoon. It was the first loss of the season for the Wolverines.
Women's soccer gets a lesson'
in defense from Schoolcraft
BY JAY MOSES
Shouts of "First to the ball,
Blue!" could be heard coming from
the players on the bench at the
Women's soccer club's game yester-
day afternoon. They should have
National Junior College champion
Schoolcraft College beat Michigan to
the ball consistently, and the result
was a 2-0 loss, the Wolverines' first
setback of the season. The loss
moved Michigan to 6-1, while
Schoolcraft improved to 3-0-1.
Michigan suffered a devastating
setback in the first half when
sophomore goaltender Shelley Brown
went down with a knee injury on a
save attempt. Schoolcraft's Sharyl
Acitelli scored the first goal of the
game on that play.
"I WOULD imagine (Brown)
will be out a couple of weeks," said
Michigan coach Bobby Paul. "It was
pretty serious. We'll just have to
sacrifice one of our field players."
Brown is the only true goaltender
on the team, so the Wolverines suffer
when she is unable to play. Never-
theless, sophomore Crista Towne
performed well as a backup, allowing
only one tally.
"I felt like we carried the play,"
said Paul. "We just didn't create op-
portunities in their end of the field."
The Wolverines had a difficult
time capitalizing on opportunities as
they were stifled by Schoolcraft's air-
tight defense. Michigan had several
good chances to score, but each time
they were turned away by goaltender
Kris Moore and the Schoolcraft
fullbacks, who outhustled the
quick talent and sharp execution
despite being a team made up entirely
of first-year players and sophomores.
Michigan, in contrast, was unable to
take advantage of its greater
In the second half Schoolcraft's
first-year halfback Dawn Gabriel
scored the insurance goal on a break-
away which caught the Wolverine
Nevertheless, Michigan played a
gutsy game, led by club president
Amy Stock and first-year player
Marianne Giolitto, reassuring Paul
that the team will rebound.
"This game was disappointing.
We didn't execute what we practiced.
But we should carry most of our
other games the rest of the season."
How to ru~
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