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March 22, 1993 - Image 14

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The Michigan Daily, 1993-03-22

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Page 6 -The Michigan Daily-Sports Monday- March 22,1993

Favored Blue still owned by Lake at the Joe
_akers keel haul Michigan for third straight year in league tournament

Weak effort results in
worse performance
by Chad A. Safran
Daily Hockey Writer
DETROIT - Take a penny and place it on a railroad track just before a
train comes rushing by. Once the train has departed, you find the penny -
flattened. The engravings on the coin can no longer be read. It is like the
images and words were never there. Much the same could be said of the
Michigan hockey team in its 5-3 loss to Lake Superior State in the CCIIA
semifinals.
The Wolverines were definitely the penny in this game, while the Lakers
came out like a locomotive careening down the tracks. At full speed. With
tremendous power.
The first two periods were the worst 40 minutes of hockey Michigan has
played all year. Lake Superior skated by, over and through the Wolverines
as if they were not even on the ice. Laker forwards were not being stood up
as they rushed into the Michigan defensive zone.
One would think that the Michigan blueliners were best friends with
Lakers Brian Rolston and Sean Tallaire, seeing as how easily the duo
walked into the zone. Kind of like Abe's face on the penny, the defense had
vanished.
Yet, it was not only the defense that was being run over.
The offense was almost as horrendous as the defense for the first two
periods. Michigan did not manage a shot on goal in the second period until
the 8:39 mark when David Oliver fired two shots off in a matter of seconds.
Michigan only had 12 over the first 40 minutes. Was this the same team that
is-second in the nation in goals per game?
Passes were hitting Wolverine skates, not sticks. And if perhaps the puck
hit the stick blade, it would quickly roll away to some Laker just awaiting
the mistake. Even Michigan's most consistent players were misfiring on
their feeds. Rolston capitalized on the biggest Wolverine turnover, grabbing
a sloppy pass and scoring a shorthanded breakaway goal that put the Lakers
up, 3-1, early in the second period.
The offensive errors never stopped for those two periods. The most dis-
graceful part was the fact that the Wolverines were outworked all over the
ice. Hard work is usually a Michigan trademark. However, this time it was
the Lakers who left their stamp upon the Wolverines.
Even the Michigan fourth line, which is counted on for its grinding abil-
ity and forechecking, got chewed up by Lake Superior. The Lakers were
grabbing every loose puck. The Wolverines were skating after the disks
apathetically.
Finally, the Wolverines decided to show up in the third period. After
scoring two goals within the first three minutes of the stanza, the gap was
only one, 4-3, Lake Superior's lead.
"When we got desperate, we came together," Michigan coach Red
Berenson said.
Desperate is not the way to play against Lake Superior. The Lakers are
not going to give up a three-goal lead, especially entering the third period.
The Lakers' defense is too solid; the players too well disciplined.
"We almost beat them by playing one period of hockey," defenseman
David Harlock said.
One period of solid hockey. Did the Wolverines forget that it takes three
quality periods to win?
The Wolverines had their chances in the late going but were stopped by
Laker goalie Blaine Lacher time and time again. It appeared as if Michigan
was going to replay its 7-6 comeback triumph of one year ago against
Northern Michigan in the NCAA tournament.
Michigan had two power plays in that final period. The club could not
convert on either opportunity as Mike Knuble came the closest when he was
stopped on the doorstep at the 12:16 mark. Alas, it was not to be.
"We use a bend but don't break type of defense," Lacher said.
The Wolverines were certainly pressing the issue. The Lakers were a
tired team in the game's final stretch, having played Friday night. Yet,
Michigan could not capitalize. It was too late.
The early mistakes cost the Wolverines the game. They displayed no fire
and no energy early. Percentages say that the team that scores first usually
wins. This time it was not only the goal, but the opening effort that damaged
any chance Michigan had.
Playing without spark is understandable against some of the league's
lesser powers. Against the defending NCAA champions, if a team does not
come prepared to play, it will be run down with ease.
"Every other guy on the team didn't show up," defenseman Chris Tamer
said. "Maybe it was the way we approached the game mentally."
The Wolverines showed a lackadaisical effort for two-thirds of the game,
one that was by far the biggest of the season. It was as if the players did not
care. Where was the pride? Where was the heart and desire to beat the big
rival? Michigan was embarrassed for most of the game.
If the Wolverines show the same effort they did against Lake Superior in
the next game, the NCAA tournament opener, the team could end up like
that penny on the train tracks - flattened.

by Brett Forrest
Daily Hockey Writer
DETROIT - "I own you." It is
rather reminiscent of a cheesy line
from a low-budget soap opera or a
"USA Up All Night" film. In these
cases, the decree is a function of
mere writer's cramp. Hlowever,
when Lake Superior and Michigan
meet in CCIHA championship
hockey, the declaration becomes an
ordinance strictly adhered to by the
Lakers in the dominant position and
the Wolverines on the subordinate
end.
In the 1991 CCI IA championship
game, Michigan jumped out to a
first-period 2-0 lead. Lake Superior
clubbed its way back to take 4-2 and
5-3 leads in the second period.
Wolverines Aaron Ward and Don
Stone then scored third-period goals
to send the game to an extra period.
The Lakers took control in the
overtime and freshman Clayton Bed-
does slipped the puck through the
legs of Michigan goaltender Steve
Shields for the game-winner at 6:39.
Last year, the two teams met
again in the final game of the league
championship. The third period be-
gan with the squads tied at one. Lake
Superior found an extra gear in the
final stanza and raced by the
Wolverines again, 3-1, on goals by
Paul Constantin and Brian Rolston.
Saturday, Michigan and LSSU
were paired once more at Joe Louis
Arena, this time in the semifinal
round. To put it mildly, the Wolver-
ines skulked out of the gate at a can-
ter while the Lakers' gallop was
suggestive of a triple crown winner.
It is almost as if the Lakers are
playing a high stakes game of
Monopoly. They own the deed to
Michigan Avenue and place hotels
on the causeway every postseason.
"It seems like we're snakebitten
here (at Joe Louis)," Michigan right
wing David Oliver said. "We can
beat everybody but Lake. We get
SCORE BY PERIODS
LSSU 2 21- 5
Michigan 1 0 2- 3
First Period: 1, LSSU, Strachan
15,2:26.2, UM, Stewart (Wiseman),
13:26. 3, LSSU, Tallaire (pp)
(Rolston), 17:55.
Second Period: 4, LSSU, Rolston
31 (sh),1:04.5, LSSU, Strachan 16
(Hulett, Miller), 12:36.
Third Period: 6, UM, Robets 25
(Ouimet, Shields), :26. 7, UM,
Knuble 26 (pp) (Sittler, Ouimet),
2:40. 8, LSSU, Strachan (pp), 17,
19:45.
Goalie Saves: UM, Shields (8-9-
5- 26). Lake Superior, Lacher (4-
7-8- 22).
Official Referees - Matt Shegos,
Brent Rutherford. Linesman -
John Kelly.
Att:12, 144

here every year and lose to Lake
State - it's like clockwork."
Michigan has improved every
season over the past four. The
Wolverines transformed themselves
from a near-miss NCAA participant
into one of the strongest favorites in
this year's tournament. But no play-
off banners were hung from the Yost
Ice Arena rafters during that time.
"We've done a lot, we've ac-
complished a lot," Michigan senior
defenseman Pat Neaton said. "But
we've never won the CCHA cham-
pionship. We went to the final four,
but we never won it."
Lake Superior had its own per
plexing moments in the CCHA tour
nament. The Lakers lost the champi-
onship game five of six years from
1985 to 1990 before breaking
through and beating Michigan in
1991.
Michigan is the new kid on th
block, though. It has been a top team
for just a short time while Lake Su-
perior won the NCAA championship
in 1988 and 1992 and, with yester-
day's 3-0 victory over Miami, the
last three CCHA titles.
Perhaps Michigan coach Red
Berenson tried to draw comparisons
between the two squads following
Saturday's repetition of history.
"Coach said it took Lake Supe-
rior three, four years before they
could win the tournament down
here," Michigan captain David Har-
lock said. "It's really frustrating. But
the last three years we've taken so-
lace in knowing we were going to be
in the NCAA tournament."
Certainly, consolation can be
tiken in the fact that the season is
not finished. The numbers and ban-
ners still show, though, that Lake:
Superior has Michigan's pink slip i
its back pocket.
Lake State
grabs third
consecutive
CCRA title
DETROIT (AP) - John Hendry
scored two goals and assisted on
Rob Valicevic's game-winner Sun-
day as Lake Superior State won its
third straight CCHA championship,
defeated regular-season champion
Miami 3-0.
Lakers' goalie Blaine Lacher
made 17 saves in posting his second
shutout of the season and was named
most valuable player for the champi-
onships.
The victory gives Lake Superior
an automatic bid to the NCAA West
regional that will be played also at
Joe Louis Arena March 26-27.
Lakers' defenseman Michael
Smith and forwards Brian Rolston
and Wayne Strachan joined Lacher
and Valicevic on the all-tournament
team. Miami defenseman Bobby
Marshall rounded out the squad.

0'

*1

DOUGLAS KANTER/Daily
Lake Superior right wing Wayne Strachan celebrates his third tally of the
game Saturday, an empty-net goal with 15 seconds remaining in the game.

ICERS
Continued from page 1
puck on the left side of the Laker
zone. Ouimet immediately centered
to a rushing David Roberts, who
promptly blew the puck past goalie
Blaine Lacher glove side for his 25th
score of the season.
"We were only down three, so
we knew we could do it (come
back)," Michigan defenseman Aaron
Ward said. "Roberts' goal keyed that
and made believers out of us."
"I think when the first shift got
that goal, it lifted everyone up,"
Roberts said. "We maintained that
intensity for the rest of the period."
Indeed, less than two minutes
later, Michigan took advantage of a
Laker tripping penalty to narrow the
gap to a single goal on the power
play. From behind the Laker net,
forward Ryan Sittler slipped a pass
to Mike Knuble in the slot. Knuble
ripped a slapper past Lacher for his
26th goal of the season, suddenly
erasing the misery of Michigan's
first two periods.
"I was pretty nervous after the
first one (Roberts' goal)," Lacher
said. "They come in waves."
But those waves dried up.
Michigan might have been in-
spired by Ferris State, who evened
the score with Miami in the other
semifinal game with 4.2 seconds left
in the game. But while the Wolver-
ines outshot Lake Superior, 10-6, in
the period, they just couldn't come
up with that last goal.
"Our defense closed the gaps on
their forwards pretty well," Lacher
said. "Our defense - we bend, but
we don't break."
"All I know is that in the third
period, you saw our real team,"
Ward said. "The chances were there.
We just couldn't put them in."
In fact, the only other chance
Michigan did convert was the result
of a Laker miscue. Down, 1-0, in the
first period, Michigan center Brian
Wiseman caught the Lakers on a line
change and fed winger Cam Stewart
at the red line. Stewart raced past the

Laker defense before beating Lacher
stick side on the breakaway.
But Stewart's goal failed to spark
the Wolverines, and just over three
minutes later, Laker center Brian
Rolston won the faceoff against
Ouimet to the left of the Wolverine
goal. Ouimet fell forward, allowing
Rolston to skate by unchecked and
feed Sean Tallaire for LSSU's sec-
ond goal with nine seconds left in
the man-advantage.
The Lakers converted their sec-
ond power-play opportunity after
Michigan was whistled for having
too many men on the ice. Shields
cleared the puck and headed for the
bench to give Michigan six skaters.
However, Strachan intercepted
Shields' pass and knocked home the
empty-netter for his third goal of the
game with 15 seconds left in the
contest. Strachan's goal was a fitting
end to the game.
"We started jumping in the third
period," Roberts said. "But against a
good team like that, you can't just
play one good period."
"I think fatigue started entering
into it late in the game," Lake Supe-
rior coach Jeff Jackson said. "We
started to get tired, but we held on."

01

01

DOUGLAS KANTER/Daily
Michigan's Cam Stewart skates against LSSU. Stewart scored Michigan's
first goal on a breakaway against tournament MVP Blaine Lacher.

Ty fo 1 a T Ho0
1993 NCAA HOCKEY FINAL FOUR
1993 NCAA Location Date Price
West Regional Joe Louis Arena, Detroit, ML March 25-28 T.B.D.
East Regional Centrum, Worcester, MA March 25-28 T.B.D.
Final Four Bradley Center, Milwaukee, WI April 1-3 $60.00

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