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December 12, 1994 - Image 18

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The Michigan Daily, 1994-12-12

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10 - The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday, December 12, 1994

Wolverines claw past Panthers, 81-67
'M' tops last season's win total with victory over Wisconsin-Milwaukee

!"
A

By DAVID ROTHBART
Daily Basketball Writer
The Michigan women's basket-
ball team learned Saturday never to
take an opponent lightly.
Playing a winless Wisconsin-Mil-
waukee squad that was averaging 40
points less than its opponents, the
Wolverines nearly suffered an upset.
The Panthers (0-5) hung in the game
for 34 minutes before Michigan (4-4)
dispatched them, 81-67.
Wolverine coach Trish Roberts
was happy to get the victory, but was
disappointed that her team could not
put Wisconsin-Milwaukee away ear-
lier.
"We were not mentally prepared
to play hard," Roberts said. "This was
ateam we felt we could practice things
against, but they almost came out
with the victory."
Michigan won the opening tip and
streaked out to an 18-6 lead behind
solid shooting from forward Silver
Shellman and center Catherine
DiGiacinto. In contrast, the Panthers
struggled early, committing several
unforced turnovers, but 6-foot-2 cen-
ter Apryl Rodman rallied her team
back into the game. BehindRodman's
low-post scoring, Wisconsin-Milwau-

kee surged to within two, 25-23.
DiGiacinto responded with a slic-
ing drive to the basket, and a 10-foot
jumper from Amy Johnson put the
Wolverines up by five. But then
Michigan's problems began just as
point guard Mekisha Ross' shoe
popped off as she brought the ball
upcourt with two minutes to go in the
half.
Two free throws from Rodman
and a long 3-pointer from Panther
guard Betsy Sanders with six ticks
left on the clock tied the score at 35
going into halftime.
In the lockerroom, Roberts
pounced on her young team.
"You ought to feel embarrassed,"
she told her troops. "You have to
come ready to play."
Wisconsin-Milwaukee scored first
to start the second half, but a 3-point
bomb from freshman guard Molly
Murray sparked a 10-0 Michigan run.
Still, the Panthers would not surren-
der.
Rodman dazzled the Crisler crowd
with her scoring arsenal. She nailed a
baseline jumper, spun past two de-
fenders for an inside bucket and
stroked a 15-foot shot from the left
wing. The Panthers' center tallied

seven straight points to cut Wiscon-
sin-Milwaukee's deficit to 64-60 with
six minutes remaining.
That's when Michigan center Jen-
nifer Brzezinski decided she'd had
enough. The junior, who lit up East-
ern Michigan for 28 Tuesday, scored
all 11 of her points down the stretch.
After Rodman fouled out with four
minutes remaining, Brzezinski took
control of the lane, and the Wolver-
ines coasted to the win.
The triumph evened Michigan's
record and gave it one more victory
this season than the Wolverines had
all of last year. Brzezinski is pleased
with the team's progress this season.
"We're really coming together,"
Brezinski said. "Each day, we're get-
ting better."
"Our freshmen and veterans are
starting to mesh," Shellman added.
Roberts said Michigan is still on
track to accomplish its goal of a .500
season.
"We should be 6-2 right now, in-
stead of 4-4, butI'm happy," she said.
"We just never know who's going to
show up to play. Every game we have
a different leading scorer. We need to
find some consistency."
Shellman led Michigan with 16
points. Murray added 14 and Johnson
chipped in 11. Wisconsin-
Milwaukee's Rodman led all scorers
with 20.
Roberts compared the Panthers,

who have only seven players on their
roster, with last season's understaffed
Michigan squad.
"Teams took us lightly, too, but
we showed we could surprise some
people," Roberts said. "With only
seven players, though, you can't keep
up. Fatigue and foul trouble really
hurt you. (Against the Panthers), we
got payback for last season."
WISCONSINMILWAUKEE (67)
FO FT RES
MIN M-A MA OT A F PIS
Greger 33 3-10 8-8 3-5 6 3 14
Schaefer 13 0-3 2-2 2-2 0 5 2
Lowe 36 1-6 5-6 2-9 5 1 7
Gutzke 38 4-8 5-7 2-7 1 4 13
Rodman 34 8-11 4-6 4-8 1 5 20
Sanders 23 2-2 2-3 0-1 1 4 7
Rathke 23 2-9 0-0 0-1 3 3 4
Totals 200 2049 26-32 15.36 142S 67
FG%: .408. FT%: .813. Three-point goats: 1-8,
.125 (Sanders 1-1, Greger 0-3, Lowe 0-3, Rathke
0.1). Blocks: 2(Gutzke, Rodman). Turnovers: 26
(Greger 10, Gutzke 5, Lowe 3, Sanders 3,
Rodman 2). Steals: 8 (Greger 2, Gutzke 2,
Rodman 2, Lowe, Schaffer). Technical Fouls:
none.
MICHIGAN (81)
F® FT RU
MIN M -A NA 0-TA F PTS
Murray 37 5-9 2-4 0-0 0414
Johnson 25 4-9 2-2 1-3 5 1 11
Brzezinski 21 4-9 3-4 2-5 2 3 11
Sheilman 39 6-12 4-5 5-6 4 1 16
DiGacinto 34 4-7 2-2 1-5 2 2 10
Ross 16 1-1 6-7 01 2 5 8
Johns 16 2-6 1-1 2-8 1 4 5
Willard 9 2-2 1-2 0-0 0 1 5
Franklin 3 0-2 1-2 0-0 02 1
Totals 200 2-57 22-29 1332 1623 81
FG %:.491. FT%. .759. Three-point goals: 3-9,
.333 (Murray 2-5, Johnson 1-2, Franklin 0-1,
Shellman 0-1). Blocks: 2 (Johns, Johnson).
Turnovers: 19 (Sheilman 6, DiGacinto 3, Johns
3. Johnson 3, Ross 2, Brzezinski, Murray).
Steals: 14(Shelman 4, Johnson 3, Murray 3,
Ross 3, Brzezinski). Technical Fouls: none.
Wso-Mlw........ 35 32 - 67
Michigan......... 35 46 - 81
At: Criser Arena; A: 691.

.

310 MAYNARD 995-0581 (U of M CENTRAL CAMPUS)

TONYA BROAD/Daily

Mekisha Ross loses her shoe as she dribbles down court against
Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Despite this embarrassing moment, Ross helped the
Wolverines to their fourth win of the season with eight points.

BASKETBALL NOTEBOOK

Four wins not enough
for Roberts, Wolverines

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By RODERICK BEARD
Daily Basketball Writer
With Saturday's 81-67 victory
over Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Michi-
gan improved its record to 4-4. This
marks the first time since 1991-92
that the Wolverines have won four
games in a season.
Michigan was 7-21 that year, the
last year in the tenure of former
coach Bud VanDeWege. Since
then, the Wolverines have gone 2-
25 and 3-24, respectively, with only
one conference win.
Though Michigan has won more
games this season than in each of
coach Trish Roberts' two previous
seasons, she is still not content with
the team's play.
"As a coach, you're never satis-

fied," Roberts said. "We should be
6-2 instead of 4-4."
The Wolverines lost a close four-
point game at South Carolina and
surrendered a commanding 14-point
lead to Weber State earlier in the
season.
Michigan has won three of its
last four games, its best streak since
1990-91, when the team won three
straight games.
REMINDER OF THE PAST: Wiscon-
sin-Milwaukee only had seven play-
ers available in Saturday's loss at
Crisler. Last year, Michigan played
with a shorthanded seven-member
squad most of the season as well.
Roberts remembered that.situa-
tion and tried to take advantage of it
by using a full-court press and
dribble penetration to tire the Pan-
thers.
"We were in that position last
year, having a limited roster," Rob-
erts said. "Fatigue really hurt Wis-
consin-Milwaukee; it has been a big
factor for them all season, and it
was again today."
Wisconsin-Milwaukee got into

foul trouble in the second half. Af-
ter Panther forward Courtney
Schaefer and center Apryl Rod-
man fouled out, Wisconsin-Milwau-
kee coach M.A. Kelling's five re-
maining players had to play the last
4:17 of the game. The Panthers had
two other players with four fouls,
but Michigan could not foul either
one out.
If the Wolverines could have
drawn another foul on either player,
Wisconsin-Milwaukee would have
been forced to play with four play-
ers for the rest of the game.
"We always tell our kids to at-
tack the basket and be aggressive,
but they didn't do it." Roberts said.
CRASHING THE BOARDS: Michi-
gan began the week leading Big Ten
teams in rebounding, averaging 52.8
per game.
Center Catherine DiGiacinto
was second in the conference, pull-
ing down 10.8 per contest. Fresh-
man Pollyanna Johns has paced
the Wolverines the past three games,
though. Johns snagged 12 against
Eastern Michigan, nine versus Ne-

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braska and eight Saturday.
WHO's GONNA TAKE THE
WEIGHT?: In their eight games this
season, the Wolverines have had
four different leading scorers.
Sophomore guard Amy Johnson
has led the team in four contests,
with a season-high 28 points in
games at South Carolina and Geor-
gia State.
Junior Jennifer Brzezinski has
been the top gun in two games, 28 in
the Wolverines win over Eastern
Michigan and 12 at Illinois-Chicago.
Molly Murray had 27 in the loss to
Nebraska and Silver Shellman
tossed in 16 Saturday.
"It hard, because you never know
who's going to step up," Roberts
said.
STERLING SILVER: Shellman, a
sophomore forward, may be
Michigan's best all-around player.
In Saturday's win, she played 39
minutes and tallied 16 points, six
rebounds, four assists and four
steals. Shellman is averaging 8.6
points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists and
3.4 steals per game in eight games.
Blue opens
season with
intrasquad
By SARAH DeMAR
Daily Sports Writer
The two squads murderously eyed
each other across the floor in Cliff
Keen Arena Friday night as the ten-
sion mounted. The air was thick with
cut-throat competition. There was a
deadly attitude of win-and-liveorlose-
and-die between the Maize and the
Blue squads of the Michigan women's
gymnastics team.
Well, it wasn't exactly like that. In
fact, Friday marked the Wolverines'
annual intrasquad meet and the first
time this season that the gymnasts
competed in a meet-type situation.
Instead of "cut-throat competition,"
the general atmosphere was one of
supportive excitement.
The Blue squad tumbled its way to
a 148.7-137.6 victory over the Maize,
but Michigan coach Bev Plocki was
more interested in observing how her
team worked together.
"It was a learning experience,"
Plocki said. "We know errors would
be made due to nervousness, but that's
normal."
And she should know. The Wol-
verines have won 72 of 79 matches
the last three seasons.
Plocki also knows talent when she
sees it. The two new faces on the

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