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February 06, 1995 - Image 12

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The Michigan Daily, 1995-02-06

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4 - The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - Monday, February 6, 1995

Wolverines prove their mett
in third-period explosions

Mike Knuble fights for control of the puck in Friday night's 8-3 Wolverine victory over Western Michigan. Knuble
tallied one of five Michigan goals in a third period scoring spree.
Blue power play sinks opposition
Michigan converts on six of 12 attempts over weekend

By Melanie Schuman
Daily Hockey Writer
EAST LANSING - When a team
has one more skater on the ice than the
opponent - in other words, a man
advantage - it is called a power play.
After an early-season struggle when
Michigan went 5-for-21 with an extra
skater, the squad started climbing in the
league rankings. It earned the No. 1
ranking overall in the CCHA after win-
ning its seventh-straight Great Lakes
Invitational.
Michigan's top power play unit
fielded Mike Knuble - who led the
nation last season in power play tallies
with 32-Jason Botterill, Kevin Hilton,
Robb Gordon and point-man Brendan
Morrison. The second unit with Bill
Muckalt, Warren Luhning, John Mad-
den, Mike Legg and Steven Halko as a
steady conglomerate, but didn't find the
back of the net with such ease as their
compatriots.
This tandem of units was effective,
so much that it was ranked No. 2 in the
country in early January and has contin-
ued to mingle with the top three con-
tenders.
But soon that well of riches dried up.
There was talk that too many teams
knew what Michigan would do, and the
old Morrison-to-Hilton-to-Knuble meter
;yhad expired.
"Teams knew what to expect every
night, and now we're throwing some-

thing different at them," Knuble said.
"As teams scout us, we had to roll with
the punches and change everything."
The coaching staff tried moving
Hilton down to the second unit, but
Michigan wentadismal0-for-11 against
Western Michigan and Illinois-Chicago
Jan. 27 and 28. However, that weekend
Botterill played hurt and sick, and Mike
Legg didn't seem comfortable with his
new linemates (Knuble and Morrison)
or his position on the top power play.
Even though they did not score any
power-play goals in that series, entering
this weekend the Wolverines had con-
verted 40 of 143 power play opportuni-
ties - a mark which set them at No. 2
overall in the CCHA and No. 3 in the
nation.
Another week of practice allowed
assistant coach Mel Pearson to manipu-
late the power play units even further.
The line ofMadden, Luhning, and Hilton
joined Knuble and Morrison on the top
unit, thus allowing Knuble newfound
freedom playing the left point instead of
down low in front of the net. Knuble has
a team-leading eight power play goals,
and the team is 19-1-1 with him in the
lineup.
After converting three of seven
chances Friday and three of five against
Michigan State Saturday, Michigan has
broken out of its mini-slump.
"Changes sometimes do anteam
some good," said Matt Herr, another

new addition to the power play. "Some-
times it's the unity ofa line working well
together (that causes change), not guys
that are playing well."
Against the Broncos, Madden scored
the game-tying goal with the man-ad-
vantage, and a period later, Muckalt
netted the game winner much the same
way. Muckalt's slapshot from the hash
marks was so hard that it bounced right
back out of the net just as quickly as it
went in. The final power-play tally of
the night came when Herr scored his
seventh goal of the season on a wrist
shot that beat Bronco goalie Brian
Renfrew stick side.
Saturday, Herr started the Michigan
scoring on a the first Wolverine power
play. The freshman walked in from the
left of the goal and lifted the puck over
Spartan goalie Mike Buzak's glove.
Madden converted on the man-advan-
tage late in the second stanza when he
scored off a Luhning rebound. Knuble
scored his conference-leading fifth game
winner of the season during a three-
minute Wolverine power play.
The Spartans penalty killing was
third in the league coming into the game
Saturday, but ranked 15th nationally.
However, it could not stop the No. 3
powerplay. Ironically, the Spartanpower
play ranked second in the nation - one
spot ahead of Michigan - did not score
on any of its five chances.

MARK FRIEDMAN/Dal
Michigan forward Warren Luhning breaks free from a defender in the Wolverines' victory over Western Michigan
Friday night. Luhning had an assist in each of the contests against the Broncos and Spartans this weekend.

CCHA Standings
Through games of Feb. 4.
CONFERENCE

OVERALL

TEAM
Michigan
BowlIng Green
Michigan St.
!Miami; Ohio
Lake Superior'
Ferris State
Ill-Chicago
W. Michigan
Notre Dame
'Ohio St.

w
16
14
12
10
9
8
7.
6
3
2

L
2
4
4
6
8
10
9-
12.
17
15

J
T
3
2
2
2

PTS
33
29
27
25
21
20
16
14
7
6
atrdajy
Michigan
Miami 5,

w
21
19
17
12
11
11
10
13
7
5

L
4
7
7
11
10
13
13
14
21
20

T
1
1
3
-5-
4
3
3
2

HOCKEY NOTEBOOK
Sacka returns to lineup
after four-week absence
By Tom Seeley
Daily Hockey Writer
EAST LANSING - Michigan's Ron Sacka returned with a bang thi'
weekend after sitting out the Wolverines' last six games due to a groin injury.
Friday night against Western Michigan, the senior center scored on his first
shift of the game and assisted on another tally in the third period.
"I was so pumped up for my first shift. My goal was to just go out and get
a hit," said Sacka, a mainstay on the Wolverines' checking line before his
injury. "The puck just kind of laid there. I picked up the puck and turned, and
it seemed like everyone just left the middle of the ice.
"I played juniors with (Western Michigan goalie Brian) Renfrew for three
years so I know that every time you shoot on him, he comes straight out at you.
So I held (the puck) for a while, and I had a wide-open net."
The matchup against the Broncos was Sacka's first game since going down
in the Jan. 7 exhibition contest against Team Canada, and the injury that kept
him out was his first serious injury in his collegiate career.
FOR THE RECORD: With his goal Saturday night against Michigan State,
Wolverine forward Mike Knuble moved into sole possession of 13th place on
Michigan's career goal scoring list. The senior now has 87 goals in his
Wolverine career, and his goal against the Spartans moved him past former
Wolverine Brad McCaughey (1985-88).
Knuble needs just five more scores to move past former Michigan coach Al
Renfrew into the top 10.
SWEET M ausi While the Michian Hockev Per)Band entertains the crowd

CCHA
Continued from page 1
Hobey Baker candidates Carter and
Steve Guolla, they stole the Spartans'
dwindling hope of a CCHA regular-
season title. If Michigan State had
won, it would be just two points be-
hind Michigan and in a second-place
tie with Bowling Green. Yet now,
Michigan is six points ahead of the
Spartans.
Despite tying Western Michigan
the previous weekend, Michigan man-
aged to blow the Falgons (6-11-2, 14-
13-3) out of Yost Ice Arena in the final
period Friday and win, 8-3. Sacka,
skating on his first shift since leaving
the Jan. 7 Team Canada contest with a
groin injury, patiently skated across
the net and got Western goalie Brian
Renfrew to commit before he shot
Friday's game
MICHIGAN 8, W. MICHIGAN 3
Western Michigan 2 1 0 -3
Michigan 2 1 5 -8
first Period - 1, UM, Sacka s5 (Herr, Hogan),
3:13, 2, UM,Hilton 11(Luhning, Madden), 3:48.3,
WMU, Gallentine 16 (Brown), 12:32.4. WMU, Brown
19 (Brooks, Innanen), 17:38 (5-3) Penalties -
Kenney, WMU (holding). 9:29; Knuble. UM (rough-
ing), 9:29; Innanen, WMU (roughing), 10:27; Sloan,
UM (roughing), 10:27; Luhning, UM (roughing),
16:39; Hogan, UM (hooking). 17:23; Zimmerman,
WMU (hooking); 19:39.
Second Period - 5, WMU, Duke 9 (Mayers),
3:33. 6, UM, Madden 14 (Morrison, Gordon), 7:46
(po). Penalties - Kenney. WMU (holding), 0:50:

high for his fifth goal of the st
Just 35 seconds later, Kevin Hil
scored on a pass from Warren Luhni
and it looked as though Michigan I
returned to its dominant ways.
Yet the Broncos were still on 1
doorstep and scored back-to-ba
goals in the first, and even took I
lead early in the second. They w
deadlocked 3-3 after forty minut
but Michigan went on to scor
unanswered goals in a span of 6:37
the third.
Renfrew, previously a brick w
in goal against Michigan this seas
was a sieve in the truest sense and vi
chased from the pipes after allowi
Knuble to essentially score an:emip'
netter as he commited to Morfisoi
Special teams were key for Mic
gan, although they have str1
lately. The Wolverines notched
power-play goals and one shorthand
tally by John Arnold.
"We've got to play with a lot gc
damn more heart, discipline and I
tensity than what we played," We
ern Michigan coach Bill Wilkins
said after his team self destructed.
Saturday's game:
MICHIGAN 5, MICHIGAN STATE
Misfigan1 2-
Michigan State 2 1 0-3
RrsPedod-1, MSU, Berens 9 (Crane, lmir
5:38 (pp). 2, UM, Herr 8 (Morson), 7:05. 3, M
Keyes 11 (Tuzzolino, Clarke), 16:19. Penalties
Vanstaald'n, MSU (roughing). 2:28; Muckaft,
(roughing), 2:28; Carter, MSU (hooking), 6:32; Knu
U I&a ssc ekine 1 j . 1 2 urra, yMSI I ,

RESULTS:
Fri dy
Michigan 8, Western Michigan 3
Michigan St. 3, Ferris St. 3 (OT)
Miami, Ohio 8, Notre Dame 5
Lake Superior 5, Ohio St. 0
Bowling Green 6, Alaska-Fbnk 3

5, Michigan St. 3
Notre Dame 3

Ferris St. 4, Western Michigan 2
Lake Superior 7, Ohio St. 2
Bowling Green 6, Alaska-Fbnk 1

MICHIGAN VS. MICHIGAN STATE
Olympia Arenas, Inc. is conducting a contest in conjunction with the
Daily with prizes for the Michigan-Michigan State game Feb.18 at Joe
Louis Arena. The Grand Prize: A night for two at the Westin Hotel in-
.. ....- . . t.. . -e 4 - - r"..... r:T.e.. : - . ..

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