The Michigan Daily - Sports Tuesday - January 19, 1993 - Page 5
AAAASSS A SSS-
give Sakala ice time
by Tim Rardin
Daily Hockey Writer
Sophomore defenseman Mark Sakala
who has seen limited though increased ice time
on defense, got a chance to play some forward
Friday night against Ohio State. With the ab-
sence of forwards Brian Wiseman (back
spasms), Cam Stewart, who was serving a
one-game suspension and Anton Fiodorov,
who is indefinitely suspended for violation of
team rules, Sakala played left wing on the
fourth line with Ron Sacka and John Arnold.
"I've played a little (forward) before,"
Sakala said. "Sometimes it's good for de-
fensemen to play offense because it helps out
with puck-handling skills."
Sakala is not the first Wolverine defense-
man to move up to forward this season. Aaron
Ward, upon returning from knee surgery,
skated at right wing against Michigan State
FINALLY: Speaking of Ward, the 6-foot-2,
200-pound defenseman broke out of a season-
long scoring drought with a pair of assists in
Saturday's 4-0 blanking of Bowling Green.
Ward, who has played in only 13 of
Michigan's 23 games this season, totaled 19
points in each of the last two seasons.
"It was refreshing to finally hear my name
called for something other than a penalty,"
Now, with the exception of Michigan's
three goalies, only defenseman Al Sinclair and
Fiodorov are without a point for the Wolve-
rines this season.
WOEFUL WISEMAN: Wiseman, who had
not missed a single game in the 110 he's been
eligible to play in, sat out the first of his
Michigan career against Illinois-Chicago last
weekend. Wiseman is suffering from recurring
back spasms, a result of a hit he endured earlier
in his career.
"Four years ago, I took a hit and went head
first into the boards," Wiseman said. "Now, I
get spasms from that hit."
Still, Michigan coach Red Berenson isn't
exactly sure what the problem is.
"There's no answer in terms of what it is.
We can't see anything wrong with the discs, or
the spinal alignment," Berenson said. "Struc-
turally, there's nothing wrong. He's fine one
minute, then makes one quick move, and his
Wiseman will likely miss at least two more
weeks in order to rest his back, though he is
confident the injury is not a big deal.
"It's nothing really serious. It's an inflamed
disc," Wiseman said. "Rest and treatment will
strengthen the area."
SHIELDS SHINES: Michigan goaltender
Steve Shields, who thwarted 45 shots this
weekend and shut out Bowling Green
Saturday, earned CCHA Defensive Player-of-
the-Week honors for his efforts. Western
Michigan forward Chris Brooks captured the
equivalent offensive award for his three-goal,
two-assist performance against Bowling Green
and Ohio State.
Continued from page 1
Digest' (a television program which
airs on PASS)," Stone confided. "It
said in the standings we were fifth or
sixth in penalty killing in the league.
That was something we were
ashamed of at the time. We wanted
to try and move up. It's something
you take pride in, especially when
it's your job to kill penalties."
Then came the back-breaker for
Bowling Green (7-11, 12-14).
With under a minute to play in
the second stanza, Dan Stiver carried
the puck into the right side of the of-
fensive zone. After executing a
pretty spin move, he tip-toed along
the blue line and dodged two Fal-
cons. Stiver then took a point-blank
shot that was stopped by BGSU
goalie Aaron Ellis.
Mark Ouimet was in the vicinity
to corral the rebound and score his
sixth goal of the year off the left post
five seconds before the second in-
termission. For all intents and pur-
poses, the game was over.
"When your penalty killing is do-
ing well, you're usually winning,"
Willis said. "(Killing the penalties)
built a lot of momentum for us. The
guys on the bench were ecstatic. We
were really psyched."
Michigan then got psyched to
finish off Bowling Green in the third
At 15:25, David Roberts was
called for a phantom holding penalty
as he was dragged to the ice behind
the Falcon net. The Wolverines were
running on all cylinders to kill the
penalty and the puck was dumped to
the top of the right offensive circle.
Ellis and Stone raced for the disk
from opposite directions. Ellis won
the race but misplayed the puck in
Stone's direction. Stone picked it out
of the air and slammed it into the
gaping net for his seventh tally of
"It was a bad play by the goalie,"
Stone said. "If he could have done it
over, he probably would have gone
the other way with it. It doesn't get
much easier than that."
It was Michigan's second short-
handed goal of the year and the sec-
ond of Stone's career. The goal
might sound familiar to Wolverine
faithful as Stone scored in almost the
same manner against Wisconsin in
Michigan's 4-2 loss in last year's
"I think it's his baseball skills,"
Ouimet said. "He used to be a good
baseball player in high school. He's
always batting the puck out of the
The blanking of the Falcons was
the second shutout for Shields this
season and the third of his career.
"I was confident all game,"
Shields said. "Tonight really re-
flected how the team played. I did
my job, but a shutout gives a boost
to the whole team. It builds confi-
dence in everyone defensively."
Michigan opened the weekend as
Roberts had a night to remember
against Ohio State. The senior
winger scored twice and assisted on
"The puck just went in tonight.
They all count the same," Roberts
said. "I have been working more on
my speed and power. People know
when I have the puck I'm going to
put on a head fake and try to go
around them. I'm trying to rush to
the net more."
Roberts helped to seal the victory
as he registered Michigan's third
goal 38 seconds into the second pe-
riod. While quarterbacking the
power play, he walked in from the
left point and gunned a shot past
OSU tender Tom Askey on the far
"I told (Roberts) he's been too
cute with the puck," Berenson said.
"He has more speed and power if
he's skating hard. When he is taking
the man, good things happen to
Sophomore Ron Sacka collected
the winning goal at 16:40 of the
opening stanza as he took a crisp,
cross-ice pass from Willis. Sacka
strode in from.just.outside the blue._
line on the right side and beat Askey
with a backhand low to the short
"Willie gave me a great pass,"
Sacka said. "Our line has been play-
ing really well lately. I told
(teammate Mike) Knuble if I scored
tonight, I would get a tattoo."
Sacka has yet to adorn himself
with such an outward form of self-
expression. However, this weekend
is definitely one Berenson has
etched in his mind as an example of
the solid game his team needs to
play to win a trip to Milwaukee for
the NCAA Championships.
"We can build on a weekend like
this," he said. "It was a good week-
end, but we're not close to playing
our best hockey."
lhhadisplayed in victory
by Chad A. Safran
Daily Hockey Writer
On the bulletin board in the Michigan locker room, a list of team
goals is tacked up to remind the players of what is necessary to win
What they need to do to play "Michigan hockey."
The Wolverines' 4-0 victory over Bowling Green Saturday was a pure
definition of Michigan hockey.
Defense is the strength of the Wolverines. The first goal on the board
states that the team's aim is to permit 20 or fewer shots each game. The
Falcons were limited to 19 shots. Michigan goalie Steve Shields stopped
all that were fired at him, with only five or six quality opportunities.
"In order to play well, you can't give them a lot," Michigan senior
defenseman Pat Neaton said. "Our goal at the end of the season was to
have a low goals against (average), and we knew if we did that we would
be a successful team. In that sense it is indicative of Michigan hockey."
The defensemen rode the opposition off the puck. They kept the
Falcons from clogging the slot and gave Shields a clear view of the
puck. CCHA scoring leader Brian Holzinger did not have a single shot
on net the entire game.
"We've got a lot of great offensive players," Michigan center Mark
Ouimet said. "But getting a shutout, that's as good as scoring a lot of
goals. Defense supports the offense."
First goal achieved.
Two other goals listed on the
board talk about hard work and
enthusiasm. The Wolverines
demonstrated these two facets of
the game Saturday. Throughout
the entire game, the Wolverines
* Mzwere working well down low in
the offensive zone. Michigan's
forwards swarmed the net,
pouncing on any loose puck and
trying to pound it home.
In a tight, defensive 1-0 game,
all the grinding finally paid off
when Mark Ouimet put the
Wolverines up 2-0 with a scant 5
seconds remaining in the second
period. Then the enthusiasm that
the team looks for poured out, as
Stone they practically sprinted off the
ice after the second stanza.
"(Ouimet's goal) picked us up big time," center Mike Stone said.
"When we came into the locker room, everybody was high as a kite. We
knew that when we came out in the third period we had them."
Stone, the top penalty killer on the team, was doing his normal blue-
collar work on special teams when he got some unexpected worker's
The junior scored a shorthanded goal. The team and crowd exploded.
Enthusiasm was at an incredible high as a deafening sound rose from
Yost's interiors. Rumor has it Red Berenson even flashed a smile.
"(The goal) is a reward for all the dirty work," Stone said.
Two more goals achieved.
However, the concept of Michigan hockey is still not complete until
other goals are accomplished.
The list of goals reads that to be successful the Wolverines must
achieve a rate of 85-90 percent penalty killing. This weekend was a
clinic in penalty killing. OSU had four chances with the man advantage.
How many goals did the Buckeyes score on the power play? None. And
Bowling Green suffered'the same fate, although the Falcons had two
more chances Saturday. The kill rate was a nice round number - 100
"We've got a lot of guys on this team who can kill penalties,"
Ouimet said. "I feel sorry for the opposing power play."
Goal number four - a success.
The list of goals says, to be successful the Wolverines need to score
on 25-30 percent of their power-play chances. Although Michigan was
only one of five on Saturday, the club split the pipes for three power-
play goals against Ohio State on six chances. Any coach at any level
would be pleased with that. For a club that has been struggling on the
power play as much as Michigan has, 50 percent success is like receiv-
ing a call from Ed McMahon saying you have won the grand prize in the
American Family Sweepstakes. Four-for-11 on the weekend. Worthy of
a prize any day.
Another goal achieved.
The sheet says that the Wolverines need to win each series. The
Wolverines will not play a weekend series against the same opponent
both nights the rest of the season. Taking both games from different
teams might even be more difficult because of the different preparation
needed for each squad. Ohio State and Bowling Green had quiet bus rides
back to their respective schools after making their trips to Yost this
This is the fifth goal accomplished out of five. Not bad.
People will talk and say the Wolverines played this way against two
of the weaker teams in the league. "How will they play next time
against Lake Superior, Miami or Michigan State?" these people shout.
Hey, the CCHA is the toughest conference in college hockey. The
lower teams compete well with the upper half of the league. Look what
happened to Michigan against Illinois-Chicago. So a weekend like this
one should be seen as an accomplishment. However, the Wolverines
must avoid a letdown next Saturday against Notre Dame.
The tight checking and hard work has to keep coming, and most im-
portantly, the defense must repeat performances like it had on Saturday.
When it comes down to it, Michigan hockey is about playing solid
defense. Ouimet said, "Defense is the most important thing." When
asked about the definition of Michigan hockey, Stone replied by saying,
"A tight defensive game."
The clichds "Defense wins championships" and "Great teams win
with defense" are as worn out as a set of bald tires. Yet, these sayings
continue to ring true. To play "Michigan hockey," the defense must con-
tinue to rise to the occasion.
David Roberts skates at the Great La
four points against Ohio State Friday
Continued from page 1
For now though, Wiseman can
enjoy some success in the NHL
through a friendly game of Sega
hockey with his housemates. And
then again, maybe not.
"I'm terrible at Sega hockey. I'm
just terrible," Wiseman admits.
"(Steve) Shields, Ollie (David
Oliver) and Stew (Cam Stewart) are
the top three contenders in our
house. I'm better at football."
"He sucks at Sega hockey,"
Oliver is quick to point out.
Of course, only within the
confines of a video game will you
p hear that said about Brian
Wiseman's hockey ability.
"He just passes the puck so well
and anticipates so well," Berenson
said. "He's a player that if you play
a with, he creates a lot of scoring
chances for you."
Oliver, Wiseman's linemate
along with Stewart, is one of many
players who can attest to that.
"He draws a lot of attention to
himself which opens a lot of room
w up for his wingers, said Oliver, who
speaks from experience. "The only
player I can compare him to is
(Wayne) Gretzky because he's so
kes Invitational on Dec. 26. Roberts had
at Yost Ice Arena.
So pay attention, all you skeptics
Brian Wiseman still has some
things to prove, and nothing and
nobody, not even a 6-foot, 220-
pound defenseman, has stopped him
Wiseman admits that the step to
college hockey, and to college in
general, has taken some getting used
"We have to be down (at Yost)
three hours a day, and then we have
classes all day, and homework all
night," Wiseman said. "Back home,
we had a couple of practices a week,
a couple of games a week. You had.
time to do other things. Priority here
is getting the schoolwork done,
playing hockey and socializing
It was Michigan's academic
tradition, too, that lured Wiseman to
Ann Arbor. After visiting Western
Michigan, Bowling Green, Clarkson
and St. Lawrence, Wiseman decided
that Michigan offered the best
combination of academic and
"I wanted to go to a school where
I was going to be part of the hockey
success, but they also had to have a
good academic standard," said
Wiseman. who is studving to be a
professional hockey," Wiseman
said. "I've been keeping in contact
with them (the Rangers) quite
frequently. They're still concerned
about me, even though I was a 12th-
round pick. That makes me feel
Still, Wiseman, true to his name,
is realistic about his future, choosing
not to put all his proverbial career
eggs into a single hockey basket.
Wiseman has proved to be as
durable as he is talented in his career
at Michigan. Although he has
missed the last two series due to
back spasms, before last weekend's
Illinois-Chicago series, Wiseman
had played in all 110 games for
which he was eligible.
"This is the first time I've had to
sit out," Wiseman said. "It's really
frustrating watching from upstairs."
No doubt, Michigan will sorely
miss Wiseman's skills on the ice.
Those skills have been developed
through a virtual lifetime of practice,
having laced up his skates for the
first time at the age of three.
"I liked basketball, but you
know, obviously I wasn't a great
basketball player," Wiseman says
jokingly. "I eventually had to give
up (other sports) because of the time
conflict with hockey.
"We played hockey all year, 365
days a year pretty much, whether it
was on the road or on the ice,"
Wiseman said. "I grew up in an
environment where hockey was the
main sport around. By that time
(when he moved to Chatham,
Ontario, at age 10), I knew that
hockey was what I wanted to do."
That decision has been made
easier with the undying support of
"If I go out and play well, I might
have a chance to play somewhere in
the organization," Wiseman said. "If
that happens, that's gonna be great.
Lake Superior 10
Michigan St. 9
W. Michigan 9
Ferris St. 6
Rnw~~lnn rrpon 7