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September 08, 1997 - Image 14

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-09-08

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4B- The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - September 8, 1997

Wolverines happy to see 'the best
player in the nation' leave town

By Tracy Sandler
Daily Sports Writer
When the Michigan field hockey
team stepped onto Ocker Field
Saturday afternoon, it had every
intention of stopping North Carolina's
Cindy Werley. The Wolverines found
that the defending Honda Award
receipient for best player in the
nation, not to mention a former
Olympic athlete, is basically unstop-
With just more than 11 minutes
played in the first period, Werley
scored her first goal of the day. At
2:46 left in the first, she had achieved
a hat trick, on her way to scoring four
goals in just 35 minutes and leading
the top-ranked Tar Heels to a 6-3 vic-
tory over the Wolverines.
"You can't really stop Cindy,"
Michigan coach Marcia Pankratz
said. "You've got to let her have her
goals, and hopefully, we can outscore

them. ... She's certainly, by far, the
best player. She's polished, and she's
not going to make mistakes."
The players knew that their coach
was right. The only way to stop a
player like Werley is to be on top of
your game.
"She's not going to mess up, so
you've got to make her," defender
Sandra Cabrera said. "She's got the
skills. She's a very skilled player. All
you have to do is worry about your
own skills. If you do that right, I think
you can get her."
Although playing against someone
as talented as Werley could cause
frustration for opponents, Michigan
also sees it as an opportunity. In order
to become the best, the Wolverines
know that they have to beat the best.
"She's definitely, I would say, the
best collegiate player in the nation,"
goalkeeper Amy Helber said. "When I
look at a hat trick being scored by

anyone against me, I guess I'd have to
choose Cindy Werley to do it."
As much as the Wolverines respect
Werley's talent, no one appreciates
her value as much as the Tar Heels
themselves. The players surrounding
Werley are not too bad, either.
"Cindy's doing a wonderful job,"
North Carolina coach Karen Shelton
said. "All three of our forwards
together combined to kind of create
some of Cindy's goals. She just hap-
pened to be the end pass. Kate Barber,
Nancy Pelligreen and our -midfield
worked together to set it up.
"But Cindy, certainly, she had a
wonderful game (Saturday)... She cer-
tainly is establishing herself as a scor-
ing threat. She was player of the year
last year, and there's no question she's
a strong candidate for player of the
year this year."
Shelton is not the only one who
realizes the importance of teamwork.

Werley sees her teammates as one of
the main reasons for her personal suc-
"I don't know that I necessarily
dominate," Werley said. "I think my
teammates make me look good. I
think we make each other look good.
At least three of my goals, if not all
four, were totally perfectly set up.
I didn't have to do anything but just
put the ball in an empty net. I give all
the credit to Nancy and Kate. They
played excellent. Sometimes it's bet-
ter to have a good assist than a goal."
As with all team leaders, Werle*
brings more than just physical domi-
nance to the Tar Heels. She makes the
people around her play better through
her attitude and her example.
"She brings up everybody's level of
play by her intensity," Shelton said.
"To have a person out there that plays
with that kind of a presence, that
brings up the people around her."

Sandra Cabrera and the Michigan field hockey team lost to North Carolina, 6-3,
this weekend, but hopes to rebound Friday against Kent State.

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Continued from Page lB
belong where he is.
If Carr was to be the man, he should have been
named head coach quickly. If not, they should have
found someone else. Period.
One gut-check failed, more to come. (Too many sea-
son-ticket requests? Hey, screw the students instead of
standing up for them. It's the easy, lucrative way out.)
Then, there is basketball. Roberson has been ready to
defend coach Steve Fisher, but a hush-hush policy has
been cast over the entire episode. The only strong stance
taken has been a firm resistence to share information
and little initiative to aid openly in any investigation.
No one has been truly honest, even if they haven't
So it goes with nearly everything at Michigan when it
comes to athletics. The department hides from the pub-
lic. There is a code of silence on trivial matters and
important matters both, as if no one there can tell the
difference. Can't ask about the quarterbacks, can't ask
about NCAA violations, can't ask anything. Practices
are closed. Players are unavailable. (Someone might
have a stubbed toe. They call that, as they do with liga-
ment tears, being "banged up.")
The media is frustrated and therefore more curious
than ever. Just two days ago, reporters from some of the

highest-regarded newspapers in the nation vented in the
Notre Dame press box about how rude and unaccomo-
dating Michigan is to the media.
If Goss has the guts, he has the opportunity to change
all that. He's a Michigan man, but being from
California, he's enough of an outsider to have new ideas:
He's got a business background. He's black, fitting a
profile no Michigan athletic director has ever had, in a
mostly white establishment. He was the first choice of a
search committee, not a hand-picked presidential puppet
like Roberson.
Goss seems a perfect person -- solid and practical but
not entirely of the old mold - to bring freshness to a
grand tradition that has grown a bit musty. But he's also
Michigan's fourth athletic director in nine years (five
men served from 1898-1988). There have been several
sudden changes at Michigan lately and too few quality
responses to them. Goss needs to be willing to take a
We'll see how solid Goss is when we - and he -
least expect it. The ball isn't in Goss's hands now. It's o
the turf, squibbling away, and Goss will have to make th
recovery, fumble after fumble. He's on defense for
Michigan once again, but this time, more is at stake than
there was in 1968.
It's gut-check time.
- Nicholas J. Cotsonika can be reached via e-mail at

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