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February 06, 1996 - Image 11

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The Michigan Daily, 1996-02-06

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The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, February 6, 1996 - 1I

Late nights wear out 'M' spikers

By Mark Snyder
Daily Sports Writer
On your feet means on your game -
usually.
This weekend's Wolverine Collegiate
Classic Tournament was the exception.
The Michigan men's volleyball team
lid not advance to the playoff round,
,ing matchesto Western Michigan, Lou-
isville, Calvin and pool-winner Buffalo:
Because only the top three teams from
each pool advanced, the Wolverines were
left without a berth.
Michigan, the host school for the tour-
nament, was tired before the day-long
event even started. Wolverine players
had been awake until midnight the previ-
ous night, setting up for the event - after
they had defeated Northwestern.
The Wildcats succumbed to Michigan
on Friday night in a five-set match. It was
the beginning of a long weekend for the
Wolverines - one which would not end
until 2:30 Sunday morning.
Saturday morning's matches brought
mostly frustration for Michigan. Captain
Jamie Reynolds was notperforming up to
expectations and the team's output was
suffering.
"Jamie is relied upon by the whole
team and when he is not playing as he
usually does, we need to come up with
new options," Michigan coach Kent
Booker said.
The morning matches were highlighted

by strong play from role players Tim
McTigue and Judd Larned. But th rest of
the team was unable to make the dramatis
kill necessary to defeat the other squads.
"Everyone was a step slow,"R eynolds,
said. "I don't know what the problem
was."
However, the day was not a total loss.
Michigan stepped up its play in the after-
noon, dominating Miami (Ohio), 11-1
and 11-6. The inspired play was aresult of
the optimistic attitude which this team
thrives.
Emotional leader Andy Spitser led the
charge as the Wolverinesranoff'I 1 points
in the match while limiting the Redskins
to very few opportunities to get near the
ball.
The difference between morning and
afternoon was remarkable. The Wolver-
ines appeared to get a second wind and
played with more inspiration. Booker
defined the morning's problem as a lack
of concentration.g
"(The team) becomes so concerned
with results that they forget the basics,"
he said.
The Wolverines were split into two
squads - the starters, who formed the
"A" team, and the remaining players who
filled out the "B" group. The "B" squad
played in the Division II pool and ad-
vanced to the semifinal round.
The tournament was an all-day affair,
beginning at 9 a.m. Saturday and culmi-

nating in the championship, which con-
cluded well after 1 a.m.
Forty-two teams from across the Mid-
west traveled to Ann Arbor to compete ii
the toumament. There were somany teams
that an additional venue was added. While
most of the games were played at the
Central Campus Recreation Building, the
Division 11 pool matches were played
undertheroofofAnn Arbor Pioneer High
School.
Michigan's Suresh Pothiraj served as
the coordinator of the tournament..
Pothiraj, normally the "A" team's middle
blocker, is out for about another week
with mononucleosis. This enabled him to
arrange the pairings and run the opera-
tions without missing action in any of
Michigan's matches.
The event made about $4,500 for the
Michigan men's volleyball club, so from
a financial aspect, it was a success. The
preparations drained the Wolverinesmore-
than they expected, but it all was the price
the club paid as hosts.
"Our play was affected (by the set-up),
and a more experienced team would be
able to overcome that," Booker said.
The youthfulness of the Wolverines is"
an asset with their eagerness and will to.
win, but everything has its drawbacks.
While the Wolverines stood for most
of the day, they also were up for most of.
the previous night. Despite being on their,
feet, their focus was not on their game. ;

7f Allen Iverson (left)
and Georgetown
lost to Villanova
last night-.
z. .AP PHOTO
iianova runs by Georgetown

;: I

THE SPORTING VIEWS:
Give Griffey the money; he's earned it

PHILADELPHIA (AP)-Villanova
coach Steve Lappas said his two fresh-
en were the difference in the sixth-
anked Wildcats' 79-66 victory Mon-
day night over No. 8 Georgetown and
its 'super sophomore, Allen Iverson.
He was referring to John Cellestand,
who finished with 19 points, and
Howard Brown, who heldthe explosive
Iverson to five points in the second half.
"These freshmen - both of them -
Just did an outstanding job tonight. It
-makes me feel good about our team
w, obviously, and for our team down
the road," Lappas said.
tellestand, whose previous best was
14 points, has been a spark off the

bench for Villanova all season. Brown
started in place of injured forward, Eric
Eberz, the Wildcats' No. 2 scorer.
"Wejust wanted to play mistake-free
ball, take open baskets and play poised.
I think we did that," Cellestand said.
Villanova (19-3 overall, 10-2 Big
East) won their sixth consecutive game
while Georgetown (19-4, 9-3) had a
two-game winning streak snapped.
"John just stepped up and did what he
had to," Lappas said. "And Howard, if
you get him fired up enough, you could
probably get him to eat that television
set over in the corner there."
The Hoyas, who were led by
Iverson's game-high 22 points, shot

just 34 percent from the field - 30
percent in the second half. They had
12 steals, but committed 17 turnovers.
Ten of the Hoya miscues came in the
second half, compared to only five by
Villanova.
Iverson's two steals enabled him to
break his own school single-season
record of 89 steals. He has-90 thefts this
season.
The Wildcats, who shot 53 percent in
the game (27-for-5 I) and were ahead
by as many as 17 points in the second
half, also got 17 points Kerry Kittles
and 15 from Alvin Williams. Chuck
Kornegay had 11 rebounds and Jason
Lawson had five blocks.

By Will McCahiil
Daily Sports Writer
What would you do with eight and a
halfmillion dollars? Not in your lifetime,
mind you, but in the next year. And the
year after, and the one after that, and even
the one after that.
This, my friends, is a question that
most ofus willonlyeverbe abletoanswer
hypothetically. But for Ken Griffey Jr. of
the Seattle Mariners, it's one he's prob-
ably pondering at this very moment.
It is to be supposed that in this, the
winter after the winter of baseball fans'
discontent, it's still open season on big
leaguers and their even bigger contracts.
But if you're one of those people
moaning about Junior's contract exten-
sion, then you obviously didn't catch any
of the American League playoffs last fall
and I would say your claim to baseball
fandom is questionable at best.
Let me go on record here: Ken Griffey
Jr. deserves every last penny of that 58.5
million he's going to be earning through
the 1999 season.
To start with, anybody who can play
baseball at that level deserves a good deal

;

of money. Anybody who can play it that
well deserves a good deal more. But
Junior is more to the great game than just
a good player.
I f anyone has brought baseball back
at least a little ways - from the brink of
death, it is this man. And he has done it
single-handedly. After sitting out a huge
chunk of last season with a broken wrist.
he came back and led his team to the A.L.
West division championship. He clectri-
fled the city of Seattle during that stretch
with his amazing. leaping-to-the-top-of-
the-wall, home run-saving catches.
Andthe swing. That honey-sweet, fluid
swing which often prompted baseballs to
flv over the far fences. well beyond the
grasp of any gaping ontlfielder.
He took the team into the playoffs for
the first time, telling his comrades he
would carry them on his back, as faras hc
could take them. And so he did. past the
Yankees, a franchise more steeped in
baseball lore than any other.
We watched in amazement. jokingly
saying to each otherevery timehe stepped
to the plate, "Here it goes, over the fence,"

and then staring, open-mouthed, as yet
another ball disappeared into the crowds
at the Kingdome or the Bronx.
After the owners and players collabo-
rated to hijack what was once America'sr
game, baseball was desperately sick.
But we've found the cure, and ifyou' v
read this fhr. you know what his name is.
Everybody repeat after me: Ken Griffey
Jr. is the future of baseball.
He's the present, too, but the future is
more important.
Last fall, I helped run a baseball clinic
in a suburb of Oslo, Norway. I heard a
little British kid, with a mitt on his right
hand, ask the white American Embassy
mailman if he was Ken Griffey Jr.
Regardless of the fact that the mailman
wasn't Junior, this is the impact he has,
and it will only get bigger.
Give him the money, all of it. And
more in four years.
If lie can bring back the game of base-
ball, the game I love,. hell, give him my
Daily paycheck.
lie's earned it.

Michigan fans shoulnt pass up
chance to see tankers try to repeat

By Doug Stevens
Daily Sports Writer
It is widely known throughout the
country, and here in Ann Arbor in
particular, that Michigan fans have
perhaps the highest expectations of
their athletic teams of any institution
in the land.
Even after big victories in the mar-
'9uee sports like football or men's
basketball, students hardly get as crazy
as they do at other schools, because,
well, they're Michigan and therefore,
they are supposed to win.
This level of confidence and pride

amongst Wol-
verine faithful
is something
that everyone
connected with
the school
*hould be
proud of; how-

IN THE TANK

school are truly big-time, swimming
doesn't particularly come to mind. The
team is never showcased on
SportsCenter like others in Ann Arbor.
Next weekend, Michigan hosts the
Big Ten Championships. Although
the Wolverines are clearly the favor-
ites to win the conference title, they
could always use more fan support.
Here are five reasons for Michigan
sports fans to come out to Canham
Natatorium:
1) Since the 198'9 men's basketball
squad won the NCAA title, only last
year's men's swimming and diving
team has brought a national champi-
onship back to Ann Arbor. The Wol-
verines are currently ranked No. 1 in
the nation and have a very realistic
chance at repeating.
2)Michiganhas won the last 1 OBig
Ten Championships and are currently
5-0 this season in conference compe-
tition. A chance to watch the Wolver-
ines earn a title in what is perhaps the
best athletic conference in the coun-
try is quite an opportunity.
3) Especially on the collegiate level,
very rarely can a person watch some
of the best athletes in the world com-
pete in a particular event. The current
Michigan roster has seven All-Ameri-
cans. Of that group, four swimmers
- Tom Dolan, John Piersma, Chris

Rumley, and Owen von Richter -_
NCAA champions. Dolan has won
five national titles in his two years at
Michigan.
4) This is an Olympic year and the
Big Ten Championships are a good
opportunity to see many potential
Olympians compete. The Wolverines
have six athletes - Dolan, Piersma,
Rumley, Jason Lancaster, and fresh-
men Tom Malchow and Andy Potts
- who are hoping to earn a trip to
Atlanta.
In addition. four foreign swimmers
have either already qualified for their
respective nation's Olympic squad or
plan on swimming at the trials: von
Richter (Canada), Derya Buyukuncu
(Turkey), Shuichi Matsumoto(Japan)
and Ryan Papa (Phillipines).
Three current Wolverines already
have Olympic experience.
Buyukuncu, Papa, and American
Royce Sharp all swam at the 1992
Olympic Games in Barcelona.
5) If these reasons don't provide
sufficient motivation to come out to
Canham on Feb. 15-17, consider this:
During the Wolverines' recent home
meet against Indiana and Michigan
State, the temperature in the natato-
rium was consistently in the upper
70s ... not a bad way to escape the
sub-zero temperatures of Ann Arbor.

,

ever, fans should not lose sight of the
fact that consistent excellence is not
something which should be taken for
granted. Because then when it occurs, it
is not fully appreciated, andlhose ath-
letes achieving greatness will not re-
ceive the credit that they deserve.
The Michigan men's swimming and
living team is a prime example of a
squad that is under-appreciated. When
people consider which sports at this

- I

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