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January 21, 1997 - Image 17

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The Michigan Daily, 1997-01-21

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BASKETBALL

The Michigan Daily - SPORTSTuesday - January 21, 1997 - 58

Blue gets running game going
Michigan conquers Iowa's patented press, scores in transition

a +
Brandun Hughes
and his back-
court mates did a
superb job break-
Ing Iowa's
aggressive full-
court press. The
vkeyes caused
Just 12 turnovers,
while committing
18. As a result,
Hughes led more
than a handful of
fast breaks, most
ending In easy
Wolverine bas- ',,.
kets.40 ,
JOE WESTRATE/Daily
Hoosiers
fall to
unranked
WEST LAFAYETTE (AP) - It did-
n't matter who guarded Brad Miller
Saturday night.
The Purdue center matched his career
highwith 25 points, all from either under
the basket or at the free throw line, as the
Boilermakers beat No. 17 Indiana 70-53.
*61was getting the ball fast and going
up with it," said Miller, who had only
four points in Purdue's last game and
didn't find out he would start against the
Hoosiers until 20 minutes before game-
time.-
"When I got the ball in the post, I
either made a quick move or threw it
back out. I just had my confidence

By John Leroi
Daily Sports Editor
Dr. Tom Davis received his moniker for a
reason.
Besides being perhaps the only college bas-
ketball coach with a doctorate (from
Maryland), the man is a basketball genius.
So whatever Davis' Hawkeyes do on the
court, you can be sure Davis spent a lot of time
and intellect creating it. Iowa's full-court press
is no exception.
While more than a handful of Big Ten teams
have seen double-digit leads whither away to
nothing, Michigan did such a good job han-
dling Iowa's aggressive press in the
Wolverines' 79-71 victory over the Hawkeyes
on Sunday, Davis almost stopped using it.
"They did a terrific job handling our press,"
Davis admitted after the game. "I don't think
we caused more than two turnovers off the
press all game."
In fact, Michigan gave the ball away just 12
times - a superb statistic, especially given
Iowa's success with the press. In return, the
Wolverines forced 18 turnovers, converting
most of them into transition opportunities.

Both teams shot exceptionally well. The
Hawkeyes hit 47 percent of their shots, while
Michigan connected on 52 percent. The
Wolverines took three more shots than lgwa
did and made four more. A plus-six in the
turnover margin will do wonders in games like
this.
Michigan scored at least a dozen baskets in
transition. With a game this close, it's no won-
der which team lost.
"It's key to get transition baskets," Michigan
forward Maceo Baston said. "We did a letter
job of turning steals into baskets today than we
ever have.
"I don't know how many fast breaks Iowa
had, but I can't remember more than ong, and
we had a lot more than that:'
Those fast breaks have been sorely missed
for a while. When the Wolverines' halfrourt
offense was struggling against good defensive
ballclubs, they weren't turning giveaways into
easy baskets at the other end.
But Michigan was able to speed up the
tempo of Sunday's game, partly becauseIowa's
big men were crashing the boards, leaving just
one or two Hawkeyes back, and partly l cause

the Wolverines gave a spectacular defensive
effort.
. While Michigan was creating fast-break
opportunities, the Hawkeyes were watching
theirs literally slip past them. Louis Bullock,
Brandun Hughes and Travis Conlan all did an
excellent job handling Iowa's pressure.
Michigan coach Steve Fisher was so
impressed with the trio's execution against the
press, he used all three guards for a large chunk
of the game. What the Wolverines lacked in
height, they more than made up for in quick-
ness.
If Michigan didn't get a transition basket off
the press break, it almost always got into its
half-court offense without any problem.
"It was easier when we had three guards in
the game," said Hughes, who sliced through
Hawkeye defenders for 18 points and at least
three beautiful assists. "That's three ballhan-
dlers who usually make good decisions.
"Our big guys did a great job rinning up to
open spots and they did a good job passing it
back to us to create fast-break opportunities.
When they pressed, we wanted to turn it
around and attack them, not sit back."

Never mind the final
score, Andre is a giant

I

By will Mccai
Dailv Snorts Editor

1

ge~N
UFERENCE
Roundup

going, no matter
who was guarding
me"
Freshman center
Jason Collier,
unable to stop

Uay p~twL'tv
Heading into this season, Iowa coach Tom.)Pavis
had two team leaders in mind for his squad. Senior
forward Jess Settles, who had declared himself eli-
gible for the NBA draft after his junior s ason,
reversed his decision and decided to return 'or his
senior season.
But a back injury has sidelined Settles for much
of this season - there is talk df him receiving a
medical redshirt - and the leadedship load ho been
placed squarely on the shoulders:
of Davis' other candidate -
senior guard Andre Woolridge.
And Woolridge has not
flinched in the least, responding'
to the challenge as well as Davis?
could have hoped. Going into
Sunday's game, he was averag-
ing almost 20 points per game
and dishing out 5.6 assists.
He's also bombing away from
beyond the arc, hitting 42 percent of his treys.
And Sunday's game was no exception, as he
tossed in 25 against the Wolverines.
Woolridge has been the Hawkeyes' leading scor-
er in 13 of their 18 games, including Sunday's con-
test.
Michigan coach Steve Fisher didn't mince his
words about Iowa's main man.
"Everybody knows Woolridge is the superstar,"
Fisher said."He's as good as we've played against in
this league in a long, long time"
Michigan guards Brandun Hughes and Louis
Bullock, who drew Woolridge as their defensive
assignment, said they weren't surprised by his per-
formance.
"You have to stay focused on him," Hughes said.
"He's a good player, and you're not going to stop
him from scoring:'
Bullock agreed that resistance, though necessary,
had proved somewhat futile.
"We knew he was good," Bullock said. "We want-
ed to make every shot a tough shot.
"He was still making them, though."
0 CAPTAINS MY CAPTAINS: After going
through the first 17 games of the season without
a captain, the Wolverines now appear to have
two: junior guard Travis Conlan and sophomore

Miller, became the first Indiana player to
foul out of a game this season. But
nobody else had any luck against the 6-
fdot-1l junior, either, as he added nine
rebounds, five steals and three blocked
shts.
Purdue (3-2 Big Ten, 8-7 overall) took
2-23 halftime lead, and Miller scored
'eBoilermakers' first seven points of
the second half as the lead went quickly
to 14. Indiana (2-3, 154), losing for the
third time in four games, never came
clqser than 10 points after that.
MINNESOTA 73, Omo STATE 67
On Saturday at Columbus, Minnesota
(54, 16-2) rebounded from its 96-90
less at Illinois on Tuesday night.
"At Illinois, we didn't play great
defense and we gave up 96 points. We
-nted to come in here today and do a
befterjob and I think we did," said Bobby
Jackson, who had 10 points and seven
assists for the Gophers.
Ohio State has lost three straight and
four of its last five since upsetting
Michigan in the Big Ten opener Jan. 2.
"It's getting frustrating," Ohio State
coach Randy Ayers said. "We play well
for 32 to 35 minutes but we can't close:'
,ICONSIN 64, PENN STATE 45
Somebody's losing streak had to end
at Madison and it was Wisconsin's. The
Badgers (2-3, 9-5) had lost four of five,
while Penn State now has lost five in a
rayw
"It appeared to be two teams that were
a little bit wounded," Wisconsin coach
Dick Bennett said. "It wasn't smooth.
There were a lot of glitches but I thought
the difference was that we played with
considerable energy if not great execu-
Penn State (0-5, 7-7) was led by Pete
Lisicky with 22 points, almost one-half
his team's output.
Northwestern hadn't beaten Michigan
State in 19 games. Make that 20 after
Saturday's game at East Lansing.
MICHIGAN ST. 75, NORTHWESTERN 62
Northwestern (0-5, 5-11) got a career-
high-26 points from Evan Eschmeyer.
"He's the first player to score 20 points
us this year and he had a great game,
but we need to sprinkle in more help
from our perimeter people,' Wildcats
coach Ricky Byrdsong said.
It was the fourth straight conference
win for the Spartans (4-2, 11-3).

center Robert Traylor.
"It's good," Conlan said. "If you work hard, that's
when things happen.
"I just tried to work hard all summer and come in
here and do my best, and I'm happy because I got
this reward for it."
Conlan is averaging 5.3 points and 4.2 assists per
game, while Traylor averages 11.9 points and 7.8
boards per contest.
"At all times I'm going to be a leader and not a
follower" Traylor said.
Indeed, the thought of being a leader and not a
follower as a sophomore didn't seem to faze him.
"We all respect each other on this team. The age
doesn't really make a difference."
CRASHING THE BOARDS: The Hawkeyes went intr
Sunday's game leading the nation in rebounding
margin, out-boarding their opponents by almost 14
per game. And indeed, against the Wolverines, Iowa
was once again the master of the glass, pulling down
33 rebounds to Michigan's 27.
Junior forward Ryan Bowen led the Hawkeyes'
effort on the boards, snatching a total of 10, includ<
ing five offensive rebounds. Freshman center Guy
Rucker matched Bowen's total, with three offensive
boards to his credit.
Michigan's leading rebounder was junior forward
Maceo Baston. He grabbed six boards, three offen-
sive.
Bowen's rebounding total appears all the more
startling when added to his scoring output: 20 points
on 6-of-I 1 shooting and eight of nine free throws.
BOMBs AwAY: It's hard to improve on a .521 clip
from beyond the 3-point arc, but Iowa's Kent
McCausland did exactly that in Sunday's game.
McCausland hit five ofthe six shots he took from
3-point land, adding up to an 83-percent success
rate.
The sophomore guard was perfect in the first half,
draining all four treys he took. He finished with 12
points, two above his season average.
In just two years at Iowa, McCausland has
already moved into 10th place on the Hawkeyes'
career 3-pointer list. Against Michigan, he passed
Mon'ter Glasper to snag the spot, and is only 27
threes behind senior guard Andre Woolridge.
The Iowa career record is 226, held by Chris
Kingsbury, who passed up his final year of eligibil-
ity before this season to enter the NBA draft.
GOLDEN BACH
Continued from Page 1B
lead, 16-15.
But Woolridge re-entered and the bat-
tle with Iowa's top gun resumed.
And at this stage, it was time to bring
out all the stops.
Hughes gave the crowd a highlight
that ended his scoring for the day, but he
did so in a most spectacular fashion.
Driving past Woolridge toward the
hole, Hughes soared above the other nine
players, flicked the ball out of his right
hand and in for two, leaving his team-
mates - particularly backcourt partner
Louis Bullock - in utter disbelief.
"He probably gets nosebleeds every
once in a while, he gets up so high,"
Bullock said.
But the play didn't faze Woolridge,
who came right back with eight points.
Hughes clamped down after that,
holding Woolridge scoreless in the
game's final two minutes.
Everyone knew who Iowa was getting
the ball to. Woolridge. And everyone
knew who was guarding him. Gre4t
players are hard to intimidate.
Hughes' strip of Woolridge with just
more than a minute left sealed the deal
for Michigan. Woolridge missed every-
thing on a desperation 3-pointer because
Hughes was right in his face.
Final score: Michigan 79, Iowa 71
Woolridge 25, Hughes 18.
"It was a tough 25'"Woolridge said. "I
worked for every shot I got"

JOE WESTRATE/Daily
One thing became perfectly clear about Iowa on Sunday: Andre Woolridge is a great player. Michigan
guarded him pretty well, and he still scored 25 points, displaying just why he is an NBA prospect.

HAWKEYES
Continued from Page 1B
the Hawkeyes to collapse on him
when he touched the ball. But his lim-
ited movement with and without the
ball cut down on his touches and turn-
around jumpers.
"(The Hawkeyes) historically play
a lot of zone ... and they did not want
our big people to beat them, so they
made it difficult for us to get it
inside," Michigan coach Steve Fisher
said.
"I think 24 threes, which I believe
is what we took, is probably too
many. We got to get our post players
touches. It starts with me, then goes
to Mo, Rob and Maceo and then it
goes to the guards."
While the Wolverines' big men
struggled, the perimeter players
picked up the slack and took advan-
tage of Iowa's zone. Bullock, Conlan
and Hughes combined for 44 points, a
whopping 56 percent of Michigan's
offensive output.
Coming off the bench, Hughes lit
up the court and was one of the only
Wolverines who successfully broke
down the zone and penetrated the
lane regularly. He finished with 18
points and three assists.
After the Wolverines amassed a 36-
35 lead with 1:40 remaining in the
first half, Hughes hit a jumper from
the left side with 44 seconds remain-
:*-r Ua ha:hit nnn ar ff4hl-nr

unconscious for most of the second
half, finishing with 25 points.
The Hawkeyes were still in the
game until the waning seconds of the
game. With 3:09 remaining,
Woolridge hit an off-balance 3-point-
er - one of his five treys on the day
- cutting Michigan's lead to 75-71.
Traylor stepped to the line with 1:50
remaining and missed both free throw
attempts. On Iowa's next possession,
Hughes knocked the ball away from
Woolridge, one of the bigger defen-
sive stops of the game.
Woolridge had one last chance to
bring the Hawkeyes to within one
point. He looked for a screen that did-
n't materialize, yet heaved another 3-
pointer that clanked off the rim.
Bullock grabbed the rebound and was
fouled with 21.1 seconds remaining.
Subsequent trips to the line for
Bullock sealed the game.
IOWA (71)
FG FT RES
MIN M-A M-A O-T A F PTS
Bowen 31 6-11 8-9 5-10 0 0 20
Koch 24 1-2 1-1 0-3 0 4 3
Rucker 34 3-11 2-2 3-10 0 3 8
Woolridge 35 9-19 2-5 0-1 4 1 25
McCausland32 5-6 0-0 0-0 1 4 15
Robinson 6 0-0 0-0 0-1 0 1 0
Moore 25 0-2 0-0 0-1 1 1 0
Bauer 13 0-0 0-2 1-2 3 2 0
Totals 200 24-5113-1912-339 16 71
FG%: .520. FT%: .667. 3-point FG: 10-18,
.875 (Bowen 0-1, Koch 0-1, Woolridge 5-
10, McCausland 5-6). Blocks: 2(Bowen 1,
Koch 1). Steals: 7 (Bowen 3, Woolridge 3,
Moore 1). Technical Fouls: none.

Tonight's game
Who: No. 13 Michigan vs. No. 19 Indiana
Where: Assembly Hall, Bloomington L M
When: 7:30 p.m.
TV: E$PN
Tickets: Yeah, right.

am

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