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September 29, 1997 - Image 14

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The Michigan Daily, 1997-09-29

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68- The Michigan Daily - SPORTSMonday - September 29, 1997

Mortimer-Sullivan photo finish
leads Michigan pack at Illinois

By Chad Kujala
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan men's cross country
team traveled to Champaign on
Saturday for the Illinois Invitational
with high expectations, and it delivered.
Although the field was not the
strongest the Wolverines will face this
season, Michigan convincingly fin-
ished first.
Michigan, ranked fifth in the nation,
was led once again by its two leaders,
senior Kevin Sullivan and junior John
Mortimer. The two have been chasing
each other all season and this week
was no different.
The duo finished so close to each
other, they shared the same time.
Sullivan was awarded the first place
finish over Mortimer, both finishing
with a time of 30:15.
The Wolverines also displayed their
depth with junior Todd Snyder finish-
ing in fourth (30:36) and sophomore
Steve Lawrence finishing sixth
Other strong finishes were turned in
,y senior Don McLaughlin (31:16),
who finished 13th, and sophomore Jay
Cantin (31:30), who finished 17th.
These strong finishes put the
Wolverines well ahead of their oppo-
dents. Michigan finished with only 26
points, far ahead of second-place

Missouri (57).
The meet also gave the Wolverines a
look at two of their conference rivals,
Iowa and host Illinois.
Iowa was able to muster a third-
place finish, scoring 75 points, while
Illinois finished fifth with 115.
The dominance by the Wolverines
was expected, but still impressive con-
sidering the length of the race.
This weekend's race was 10,000
meters, a distance the team usually
doesn't run this early in the season.
At this point in the season, the team
is usually running 8,000-meter races.
The Big Ten championships are 8,000
meters, but districts and NCAA cham-
pionships are 10,000 meters.
Michigan wanted to get an earlier
start on its preparation for NCAAs in
Last year's 14th-place finish at
nationals was disappointing for coach
Ron Warhurst and his Wolverines. The
goal to improve at nationals high on
this season's agenda.
"Coach wanted us to get a 10K
under our belts," Lawrence said. "He
wanted us to be comfortable for dis-
tricts and nationals, which are both
1 OKs."
The Wolverines took advantage of
the Fighting Illini's longer course,
which seemed to be a perfect starting

point. "It was a nice course to run our
first 10K on, it is relatively flat,"
Lawrence said.
The results of the season's first
10,000-meter race were encouraging
for Warhurst and the Wolverines.
"We are six weeks ahead of condi-
tioning from where we were last year,"
Warhurst said. "Last year, Mortimer
ran 30:36 on the same course at the
district meet. and that was in
"They all ran comfortably and came
on strong at the end."
Does the Wolverines' success mean
there isn't room for improvement in
their conditioning? Lawrence doesn't
think so.
"The results of the first IOK of the
year are encouraging, but I don't think
our conditioning is ahead of schedule,"
Lawrence said. "We don't want to be
ahead of schedule because that would
mean we are peaking too early.
"We want to peak at the right time."
Because of the Wolverines' No. 5
ranking, there are high expectations
for the team each week they race.
These expectations, however, do not
bother Lawrence.
"I think it is fun to go to meets
where other teams expect you to put on
a show," he said. "Everyone there is
expecting you to perform."

It's not surprising to see senior Kevin Sullivan pacing the Michigan men's cross country team. Only this weekend, Sullivan
was joined in front of the pack by teammate John Mortimer. The All-Americans crossed the finish line together in 30:15.

Stickers make history with one victory

32 years after its inception,
By Nancy Berger
Daily Sports Writer
The question most frequently heard from the
Michigan field hockey team sideline Friday in its
game against Iowa was: "How much time do we
have left?"
Even Michigan coach Marcia Pankratz couldn't
stop looking at the clock as she anxiously paced
the sidelines.
What was their hurry?
They were playing under unseasonably warm
and clear weather conditions. There was a large,
spirited hometown crowd, and the opponent was
the best field hockey team in the history of the
conference. Anyone who loves the sport wouldn't
have wanted to spend an afternoon like that any-
where else.
But time was the only roadblock to Michigan
field hockey history. It must have seemed like the
Wolverines' worst enemy after senior midfielder
Julie Flachs scored the game-winning goal to give
Michigan a 2-1 lead with 6:47 left in the match.
For the Michigan field hockey team and its
boosters, those precious minutes would change
the whole outlook of the program. There is no
more talk of developing a solid team that would
take the program to the next level in the future.

Michigan finally topples Big Ten powerhouse Iowa


The future is here for the Wolverines, and it is
as bright as the late afternoon sun that shined on
Ocker Field on Friday.
"There is no word for (beating Iowa). You have
to be a player that has been here to know how this
feels," Flachs said. "We have taken a huge step, a
huge step. When you have never beaten Iowa and
then finally do, that is a pivotal step."
While the Wolverines had a string of 31 con-
secutive losses against the Hawkeyes, they are the
first Big Ten team to beat Iowa in two years. Even
though there are still 10 games left in the season,
this one game has opened up the conference title
race and has given Michigan the confidence nec-
essary to be an intimidating team.
The crowd knew exactly what these hardwork-
ing girls accomplished and what this game meant
to them. It was the hooting and hollering of the
Michigan supporters that gave Michigan addition-
al inspiration.
In fact, the fans' support might have influenced
the referees' decision on who retained possession
of an out-of-bounds ball,
"They were cheering so loud that you could not
hear the whistle, and that is the best feeling,"
Flachs said. "When it comes down to whose ball
it was and our fans are cheering then (the refer-

"This is their win andw
they deserve to feel [
,good about their
program and their team.*
- Marcia Pankratz
Michigan field hockey coach
on the Wolverines' historic win over Iowa
ees) are going to give it to us."
The lively audience gave the Wolverines
resounding applause and a standing ovation as
Michigan took its post-game warm-down lap.
After their 2-1 victory over Northwestern yester-
day, the Michigan fans actually came out of th*
seats and stood along the sideline, slapping hands
with the players as they jogged by.
"This is their win, and they deserve to feel gobd
about their program and their team," Pankratz
said. "This is an exciting game, and Iowa is a
championship team. To be able to competewith
them and beat them a couple times and have a
rivalry would be great."

.enlor forward Merideth Weinstein fights an Iowa player for control of the ball in
te Wolverines' 2-1 win over the Hawkeyes on Friday.
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Weekend sweep puts
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Continued from Page 1B
beautifully executed penalty corner
to put the game away.
The story of this game though was
the Wolverines' defense, which con-
tinued its dominant play by holding
the Wildcats to one shot in the sec-
ond half and not allowing a goal until
just 5:30 remained in the game.
"We try really hard to win the 50-
50 balls," Michigan defender Sandra
Cabrera said. "We're really aggres-
sive defensively, and that is what's
made us effective."
However, as impressive as the vic-
tory over Northwestern was it paled
in comparison to the victory over
Iowa on Friday. Despite having never
beaten the Hawkeyes, Michigan
showed no signs of intimidation from
the opening whistle.
The Wolverines immediately put
heavy pressure on Iowa, rarely allow-
ing the Hawkeyes to get the ball past
The constant pressure finally
resulted in a goal when Babbitt redi-
rected a centering pass from
Meredith Weinstein past Hawkeye
goalie Lisa Cellucci to give

Michigan a 1-0 lead.
For most of the game it looked as if
the single goal might be enough
Michigan's defense swarmed arour
any Iowa players who made the mis-
take of gaining possession of the ball.
But Iowa could not be kept off of
the scoreboard forever, as its star
player, Kerry Lessard, fouind the
back of the net off a penalty corner
with 16:03 remaining in the game.
With the score tied atC'one,
Michigan could have easily folded
against an Iowa team they had nevg
But the Wolverines refused to quit
after putting forth such a concentrat-
ed effort for the first 55 minutes.
And not surprisingly, it was Flachs
who led the charge.
With less than seven minutes to
play, Flachs took a feed from Kelli
Gannon, faked out Cellucei and
buried a difficult shot from th~e.ight
side of the net for the game-winner
Flachs' go-ahead goal 'shoul
come as no surprise to Michigan
fans, as she has made late,'game-
winning goals seem almost routine.
This was the sixth game-winner
Flachs has scored in 10 games this

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