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October 17, 1994 - Image 12

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1994-10-17

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4- The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday, October 17, 1994
Madden on-the-puck P
Wolverine contributes two goals, physical presence

By BARRY SOLLENBERGER
Daily Hockey Writer
Even though official practice
started just two weeks ago, John
Madden has already found some-
thing that eluded him all of last
season - consistency.
"I couldn't find a groove for much
of last year," the sophomore said. "I
was struggling in school and kind of
homesick but Ididn't come prepared to
play."
He answered any doubts about his
readiness to play early Friday.
Madden scored back-to-back goals
within six minutes of each other in the
first period, giving the Wolverines a 4-
0 lead in their 8-0 blanking of York
Upiversity.
Playing on a squad with nine other
freshmen, Madden appeared to get lost
in the shuffle at times last season. De-
spite seeing action in 36 games, he
managed only 17 points, including 11
assists.
His two scores Friday were ex-
actly one third of his season-ending
total of six a year ago.
More impressively, however, the
center tallied both scores playing on
the third line, behind Brendan Morrison
and Robb Gordon.
Despite the fact that the third line is
not the main cog in Michigan's offen-
sive arsenal, Madden said that it
shouldn't be overlooked.
"I try not to think of it as the third
line," Madden said. "I think we're all
equal except for Morrison's line. But I
think that our line is as good as any

other line in the league."
Madden's improvement adds
much-needed depth to the Wolverine
offensive corps.
"John has played well right from
the startof the season," Michigan coach
Red Berenson said. "I think he's com-
ing into the season trying to make up
for what he thought was a frustrating
season last year."
His first score came on a power
play and gave Michigan a 3-0 advan-
tage 4:12 into the contest.
"I just busted through to the net ...
and Mike Legg hit the goal post and
the rebound game out two inches from
the goal line," Madden said. "I just
pushed it into the net."
His second score came less than
seven minutes later.

"Kevin (Hilton) picked up the puck
and skated around in the corner," he
said. "I just stepped up from behind
the net and he put it right on my stick
and I knocked it in."
He almost registered his first ca-
reer hat trick, but was denied on a
breakaway late in the second period.
"I was in by the hash marks before
I really got control of the puck and I
tried to go to my forehand," Madden
said. "I had (the goalie) beat but I just
couldn't get the puck up in the air."
In addition to his offensive work,
the Yeomen felt Madden's presence
physically.
"If you play the body, it opens up
area for yourself," Madden said. "If
you finish checks, it always prevents a
guy from getting back into a play."
An increase in his endurance has
aided his play both offensively and
defensively.
"I had 14 minutes of ice time and I
felt pretty good," Madden said. "I was
out of shape when I got here last year
and I definitely made a steady im-
provement over the summer.
"But when you're out there work-
ing hard it takes a toll, especially when
you're getting hit all of the time."
Or when you're the one giving the
hits.
"I like to hit a lot," Madden said.
"I wouldn't call them big hits. I'm
smaller than a Rick Willis or a Mike
Knuble, but it's definitely part of my
game."
Despite increasing his consistency
on both ends of the ice, Madden real-
izes there's still room for improve-
ment.
After all, it's only the middle of
October and a long season lies ahead.
"I'm still notplaying the best hockey
I can and I know that it's not going to
come easily."

Michigan captain Rick Willis makes sure his opponent is not getting up after being checked during the
Wolverines' 8-0 season-opening victory over York University.

..._..

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