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March 12, 1993 - Image 11

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1993-03-12

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Hockey Men's Basketball
vs. Notre Dame vs. Northwestern
Tonight, Tomorrow and Sunday,'7 p.m. Tomorrow, 1 p.m.
Yost Ice Arena Crisler Arena
Michigan Daily Friday, , Page 11

4

'M' hitters hope bad
luck ends in trio of
games against LSU

Cagers to close
Big Ten season

ft ,}

by Michael Rosenberg
Daily Baseball Writer
When God gave out luck,
Michigan baseball coach Bill
Freehan overslept.
After suffering four one-run
losses in their first 13 games, Free-
han's Wolverines travel to usually
balmy Baton Rouge, La., which is
expecting rain and 40-degree.
weather for the weekend. Michigan
(3-10) is scheduled to play Louisiana
State (7-3 going into last night's
game against Central Michigan) to-
day, tomorrow and Sunday.
"We may have to play a double-
header Saturday if it rains," LSU
coach Skip Bertman said.
Part of the reason the Wolverines
can't catch a break is that they have
trouble catching the ball.
"We have been working on our
fielding," Freehan said. "We are
always looking to improve in that
area."
The team's inept fielding will put
more pressure on the pitching staff.
Ron Hollis (0-2, 5.21 era), Heath
Murray (2-1, 3.57) and Eric
Heintschel -(0-2, 5.19) will take the
mound for the Wolverines.
Hollis, Murray and Heintschel
will face an LSU lineup which fea-
tures three All-Americans, including
second baseman Todd Walker, who
is hitting .310 with three home runs
and 17 RBI. Walker was touted as a
preseason favorite for the Dick
Howser Award, given annually to
college baseball's best player.
Grand Rapids native Harry
Berrios (.368-2-12) and Russ
Johnson (.368-2-9) combine with
Walker to give the Tigers a
formidable lineup.
"We have a team that is capable
of playing very well," Bertman said
of LSU, which was a consensus
preseason No. 1 but has struggled in

losses to Lamar, Mississippi and
Mississippi State. "It's too early to
tell if we can contend for (the na-
tional title). You've got to wait until
April to make that judgment."
LSU will pitch three righties
against Michigan - Bret Laxton (2-
0, 1.06), Matt Chamberlain (1-1,
4.11) and Scott Schultz (1-1, 4.86).
Bertman did not exactly change
his rotation for the matchup with
Michigan.
When asked what he knows
about the Wolverines, Bertman re-
sponded, "Well, they're in Ann
Arbor. Other than that I don't know
much."
Bertman's lack of knowledge
does not translate to a lack of
confidence.
"We always expect to do well at
home," he said.
Michigan catcher Scott Winter-
lee, the team's 1992 MVP, will re-
turn to the team after sitting out
several games with a sprained wrist.
Winterlee will join a lineup
which already includes sophomore
outfielder Rodney Goble (.407, 4
stolen bases), senior outfielder Pat
Maloney (.344, 2 HR) and sopho-
more Scott Niemec (2 HR, a team-
high 22 RBI).
"You would think that the
younger guys would be most intimi-
dated (by perennial power LSU),"
Freehan said. "But some of our un-
derclassmen have really performed
well for us against Oklahoma, Mi-
ami (Fla.), and Florida, who are al-
ways very good."
One problem for the Wolverines
could be strikeouts. Michigan batters
have whiffed 112 times in 13 games,
and the Tigers' pitching staff aver-
ages almost one strikeout per inning.

vs.

Wildcats

by Andy De Korte
Daily Basketball Writer
No one can eat just one. In the
Michigan Wolverines' case, they
have had 17 of the Big Ten variety
and 29 overall. Tomorrow,
Northwestern will be the last potato
chip in a bag of 30 before the big
enchilada - the NCAA tournament
- starts next Thursday.
If you think Michigan has victo-
ries over every Big Ten team this
season except Indiana, you are
wrong. Because of the inclusion of
Penn State in the Big Ten,
Michigan plays Northwestern t6-
morrow for the first - and only -
time this season.
Since last season's NCAA
championship loss to Duke, a return
ticket has been the focus of the
Michigan squad. Side dishes of
avenging the Duke setback or the
Big Ten crown would have been
welcome additions to the
Wolverine palate, but nothing will
taste as sweet as a National
Championship.
One loss to Duke and two to
Indiana left the Wolverines shoot-
ing for a No. 1 seed - the best in-
gredient in a recipe for a title hunt.
A Wolverine win will probably se-
cure a top spot.
Despite the Wildcats' ninth-
place position in the Big Ten,
Michigan has seen the best in its
opponents, both ranked and un-
ranked.
"We've taken a lot of good ef-
forts that have been red-letter
games for a lot of people and for
the most part we've responded
fairly well," Michigan coach Steve
Fisher said. "We're hoping we can
win against Northwestern at home
on Saturday and have a long run in

the tournament."
If a team with a 3-15 conference
record can be said to be on a roll,
Northwestern coach Bill Foster
would say it about his.
"It will be a wrap-up game for
us and obviously we want to play
as well as can," Foster said. "Our
last four or five games have been
our best this year."
By winning two of their last
four games, 62-59, at Purdue, and
100-89, against Wisconsin, the
Wildcats broke several frustrating
streaks. The victory at Purdue
ended a six-year, 60-game Big Ten
road losing streak in addition to be-
ing the first win against the
Boilermakers since 1982-83,
Northwestern's NIT season. The
three-win tally in the conference
represents the Wildcats' highest
total since 1983-84.
Still, it is difficult to imagine
Foster maintaining optimism about
playing No. 3 Michigan.
"We were ahead at halftime
there last year, and here it was four
or five late in the game," Foster
said. "We have to play as well as
we can for 40 minutes because of
the devastating way they score
points."
Northwestern is led by sopho-
more forward Cedric Neloms and
junior center Kevin Rankin,
averaging 17 and 15.5 points,
respectively. Rankin needs one
point to gain sole possession of
12th place on Northwestern's all-
time scoring list.
The final difference could be the
day of the game. Each of
Northwestern's five conference
wins over the past two seasons has
come on a Saturday.

"I T -ILLT i
Steve Fisher lambastes a referee in Wednesday's overtime victory against
Illinois. Michigan hosts Northwestern tomorrow in its final Big Ten game.

Northwestern at Michigan
Time: 1 p.m. EST.
Place: Crister Arena
TV: Raycom
Probable starting lineups
Northwestern (8-18, 3-14) Michigan (
Charles Howell, 6-10, Sr. F Chris Webbe
Cedric Nelloms, 6-5, So. F Ray Jackson,
Kevin Rankin, 6-11, Jr. C Juwan Howa
Pat Baldwin, 6-1, Jr. G Jalen Rose, 6
Kip Kirkpatrick, 6-5, Jr. G Jimmy King,

1
r
,C
r ?
6-i

13-3, 24-4)
,6-9, So.
8+6, So.
d 6-9, So.
8, So.
5-5, So.

.1

' ..

Michigan hockey looks to dispose of Notre Dame once and for all

by Brett Forrest
Daily Hockey Writer
Leo Tolstoy did not author the
script for the 1992-93 Notre Dame
hockey season. However, when the
Irish meet Michigan (23-5-2 CCHA,
27-5-3 overall) for a first-round
CCHA playoff series this weekend
at Yost Ice Arena, it may seem for
them as if the final chapters of War.
And Peace are being played out on
the ice.
Coach Ric Schafer's club
finished the CCHA season with a 5-
23-2 record, losing to Michigan by
scores of 5-1, 7-1 and 7-2. The Irish
also played a fourth non-league
game against the Wolverines in their
first meeting of the season, losing 6-
1. Tonight's and tomorrow's
contests will make it six times Notre
Dame has had to play the No. 2 team
in the country. And in the unlikely
event that this best two-out-of-three
series goes to a rubber match Sunday
night, that number will reach seven.
This makes for a difficult first year
in the toughest league in college
hockey.
"We've played with Michigan;
we competed our fair share in
games," Schafer said. "But some-

where along the line the bottom falls
out. We want to stay close (tonight).
To do that we need to play our best
for the full 60 minutes because that's
exactly what it takes."
Notre Dame enters the game with
scoring threats Jamie Ling (13 goals-
26 assists-39 points), Curtis Janicke
(12-18-30) and Dave Bankoske (14-
15-29).
Ling was recently named to the
CCHA All-Rookie team and finished
third in league scoring among rook-
ies (12-22-34). Beyond these play-
ers, though, the Irish lack the speed
and size to stay with Michigan.
"I expect them to go for a few
home-run plays early on and
throughout the series," Michigan
goaltender Steve Shields said. "They
have nothing to lose. They know
their situation."
For the Wolverines, this series
represents the beginning of a post-
season they hope will culminate
once at Joe Louis Arena for the
CCHA Championships and again at
The Bradley Center in Milwaukee
for the NCAA Championships. This
weekend is important for Michigan
to find a groove for the stretch run.

"Each weekend builds on the
previous one," captain David Har-
lock said. "We're not going to be
able to get away with a mediocre
effort this weekend. We have to
dominate every area of play."
"It'll be a closer series than it
looks on paper," Michigan coach
Red Berenson said. "We have to
play with a lot of patience and do the
things that have made us successful
all year."
Michigan enters the weekend as
the obvious and overwhelming fa-
vorite: Since the winter break, the
.Wolverines are 14-2. In the same
time period, they outscored their op-
ponents 116-30 and had four double-
digit scoring outputs. Schafer is well
aware of the power and talent on the
Michigan squad.
"The end is near. There is no
holding back - now more than
ever," Schafer said. "There is no
reason not to expend every ounce of
energy. (Michigan) is the type of
thing we'd like to become. We
would like to have the confidence

Michigan winger Cam Stewart shows a Kent State player why he is one of the most feared players in the CCHA.

{;Y: 3

4'

going into every game that Michigan
has:"
The Wolverines do have that
confidence and are glad to finally be
in the playoffs where games mean

something again. They have a goal
in mind.
"The approach to the playoffs is
much different from the regular
season," Harlock said. "We have to

put a good stand together in the
weeks to come."
"We know what we're playing
for now," Berenson said, "to get td
Joe Louis."

Fine Films For March 12 and 13 From M-Flicks
S
The Verdict - 8:00

4

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