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October 29, 1992 - Image 8

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1992-10-29

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Page 8-The Michigan Daily - Thursday, October 29, 1992

ON SIX-GAME SKID, 'M' FIELD HOCKEY TRIES TO STEM TIDE
Pacific rolls into Oosterbaan

i1

by Brett Johnson
Daily Sports Writer
And down the stretch they come.
After the Wolverines bolted out
of the gate to a 2-0 Big Ten record, a
6-1 overall ledger and the con-
ference lead, the Michigan field
hockey team has fallen off the pace
of the top horses.
The Wolverines have lost their
last six games - all Big Ten con-
tests - and have plummeted to fifth
in the conference standings. Tonight
at 7:30 p.m. in Oosterbaan Field-
house, the Wolverines will try to get
back on track against Pacific.
Pacific (3-6-1) is coming off a 3-
2 overtime win at Stanford this past
weekend and hopes to continue its
success. Senior Phyllis Rogers (3
goals, 3 assists), and junior Anika
Olsen (4 goals) lead the Tigers. Ro-
gers had two goals against the Card-
inal, including the game-winner.
Michigan coach Patti Smith

wants her team to focus on what it
needs to do to improve and not on
Pacific's game plan.
"We need to play aggressive
within the 20s," Smith said. "If we
get things done at both ends, we will
be successful.
"We need to concentrate on how
we perform. There are good player-
to-player matchups (this weekend),
and whoever concentrates for the
full 70 minutes will win."
Michigan has been getting nu-
merous scoring opportunities, but
has not been able to capitalize on
them. The Wolverines will be look-
ing for their leading scorers, Katie
Thomas and Kalli Hose, to provide a
spark and put the ball in the net.
Smith believes the scoring
drought has been due to a lack of
mental concentration within the
scoring circle.
"We're not putting the ball in the
net," Smith said. "We have had op-

portunities, but we're not finishing
them off. We need to work on our
mental concentration down the
stretch."
The defense has had its problems
as well. It has been giving up too

"The defense has let too many
goals in, and we have not been as
consistent in goal as I would have
liked." Smith said. "We need to be
patient and settle down. We have to
limit (the opponent's) penalty cor-
ners and scoring opportunities."
Michigan is finally returning
home after two tough weekends at
Iowa and Ohio State.
In that span, the team faced three
top 15 teams: Iowa, Penn State, and
Northwestern in addition to Ohio
State, which had been ranked earlier
in the year. This will be the
Wolverines' third home game of the
season - Smith and the team are
happy to be back.
"We're rested and excited to be
back home," Smith said. "It will be
good to be in front of our home
crowd."
The prospects for the rest of the
season appear to be good as the five
remaining games, including two this
weekend, are at home. Only one of
the contests is against a ranked op-
ponent - next weekend's match vs.
No. 2 Iowa.

- 1
Thomas
many shots and penalty corners. The
goalkeeping has also lacked consis-
tency, according to Smith.

KRISTOFFER GILLETTE/Daily
Minnesota's John Lewis hopes to return the Golden Gophers to the win
column this weekend against Indiana.

Who's the third best
team in the Big Ten?
by Michael Rosenberg
Daily Sports Writer

DON'T FORGET THE BIG
HALLOWEEN BASH THIS SATURDAY?
*0 |in

I

I

Par*i*ty (big-TEN'): 1) what happens when a lot of bad teams play each
other in football every week.
Indeed, it is a time of mediocrity, er, parity, in the Big Ten Conference.
The Little Nine have taken the cliche and turned it around: On any given
Saturday, any Big Ten team can lose to another team in the conference.
Here are this week's games, some of which involve actual football players.
Ohio State (2-2 Big Ten, 5-2 overall) at Iowa (2-2, 3-5)
Ohio State showed its mettle in last week's 27-17 win over Michigan
State. The Buckeyes are clearly the second-best team in the conference. Not
that Ohio State fans should be excited. Being the second-best team in the
Big Ten is like having the second-best army in the Gulf War.
Despite their upset loss to Purdue last week, the Hawkeyes might actu-
ally be the third-best team in the conference. Still, Ohio State should win
this Battle of the Eyes. (Shouldn't this game be on CBS?)
Ohio State 35, Iowa 23.
Michigan State (2-2, 2-5) at Northwestern (2-2, 2-5)
Northwestern quarterback Len Williams has already led his troops to two
Big Ten wins. Usually, that's a good season for the Wildcats. The fast start
has raised all sorts of questions. Are they that good? Can they finish the sea-
son at .500? Does anybody outside of Evanston really care?
Northwestern's joyride should end against Michigan State, which might
actually be the third-best team in the conference. MSU was playing Ohio
State closely last week until the third quarter, when the Spartans suddenly
realized, "Hey, we're not that good." Michigan State simply can't compete
with the top-quality teams anymore. Fortunately for them, Northwestern is
not a top-quality team.
Michigan State 24, Northwestern 13.
Illinois (1-3, 3-4) at Wisconsin (2-2, 4-3)
Illinois lost to Northwestern last week. Earlier this year it lost to
Houston. Kind of makes you wonder about it's Nov. 14 visit to Michigan
Stadium.
This week the "Frightened" Illini visit Wisconsin, which suffered a
tough loss at Indiana last Saturday. Still, the Badgers might actually be the
third-best team in the conference. If they want to make a postseason trip this
year, Wisconsin needs to step up, bear down and look forward without get-
ting too high or too low. Or something like that.
Wisconsin 31, Illinois 17.
Indiana (2-2, 4-3) at Minnesota (1-3, 1-6)
Minnesota lost to Michigan by 50 points last week. Why did they lose by
50? Because Gary Moeller has a heart. It should have been much worse.
Indiana, on the other hand, might actually be the third-best team in the
conference. The Hoosiers pulled out a big win over Wisconsin last week,
and they have a legitimate chance to get a bowl bid.
Indiana 28, Minnesota 21.
COPYRIGHT THE FERGUSON COMPANY1991
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