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November 13, 1997 - Image 14

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Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1997-11-13

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14A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 13, 1997

Men's cross
yhrls Duprey
t3 Sports Writer
the Michigan men's cross country team
owed up the 1997 campaign with three
goals in mind:
Win the Big Ten championship
Advance to NCAA championships
3. Place in the top four at the NCAA
championships
So far, the Wolverines are one-for-one
heir hit list. Saturday, Michigan gets a
k at No. 2 when it competes in the
A A District IV championships in
omington. More than 30 teams will be
he championships, including Big Ten
s Wisconsin and Michigan State. Two
ms will earn automatic berths to
CAAs to be held Nov. 24, while the oth-
ers will have to hope for one of four at-
arge bids.
Kevin Sullivan and John Mortimer have
their strategy ready for the district meet.

country to settle rivalry with Badgers

Knowing they will race again nine days
from Saturday if they qualify for nationals,
neither of Michigan's dynamic duo wants
to push the pace more than necessary.
"We want to make it as relaxed a race as
possible," Sullivan said. "We'll probably sit
in the pack for a while, then make a break
for it."
Michigan State's Kyle Baker is the only
runner who could pose a problem for the
twosome. But Baker has been known to
fade after strong starts, staying up with the
front pack for only half of the Big Ten race.
The Wolverines were able to fend off the
Badgers when they clashed at the Big Ten
championships Nov. 1. Michigan used a 1-
2 finish from Sullivan and Mortimer to
sink Wisconsin by 13 points. The Badge-
made a valiant effort, taking five of the
next six spots after Sullivan and Mortimer,
but it was not enough.
Wisconsin will have a golden opportuni-

ty for revenge at the district meet. With
such a large field, the Badgers' pack will
have more of an effect. In a big meet sce-
nario, Wisconsin's small pack time will do
a better job of neutralizing the Michigan
superstars.
The Wolverines' middle runners -
Steve Lawrence, Todd Snyder and Jay
Cantin -_ will have to step up and give the
Badgers a challenge.
"Hopefully, our 3-4-5 guys can beat
Wisconsin's top man or finish within 10
seconds of him," Sullivan said.
But, the Wolverines aren't taking a vic-
tory over Wisconsin for granted by any
means.
"We were fortunate to beat them (at Big
Tens)," Mortimer said. "They're a very
good team."
Michigan comes into the district meet in
top shape. All runners are healthy, includ-
ing Snyder, who ran well at Big Tens

despite being ill. The Wolverines had two
weeks to prepare for Saturday, which
enabled them to involve some short, quali-
ty speed intervals in their training.
If there's one advantage Michigan has
over the Badgers, it's been training.
Michigan coach Ron Warhurst has had the
team preparing for the 10,000-meter race
the entire season. The distance is a change
from the 8,00 meter races most other
teams compete in throughout the year.
"We're more suited for the 10,000
meters than (the Badgers) are," Sullivan
said.
The Wolverines are probable bets to earn
one of the automatic bids, but nothing is
guaranteed. If they do fail to win an auto-
matic bid, they will still most likely receive
an at-large bid.
While advancing to nationals is the ulti-
mate goal, "it'd be a lot sweeter to win,"
Sullivan said.

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One sight has been a constant this season for the
Wolverines: Kevin Sullivan and John Mortimer in front.
Women
harriers
ready for.
regionals

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By Nita Srivastava
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan women's cross
country team is hoping that history
does not repeat itself.
Last year, the Wolverines place a
disappointing fourth in the NCAA
Regionals after w inning them the
previous three years, and i was the
first time in nine years- that
Michigan did not go the the nation-
al championships.
This weekend the WOverintes
travel to Bloomington for this year's
regionals with high hopes of finish-
ing first or second, which 'wt
enable them to adance to e
NCAA championships in South
Carolina at the end of the month.
Joining the Wolverines wil be
teams from the rest of the states in
the Great Lakes Region, including
Ohio, Indiana and Wisconsin. The
third-ranked Badgers are favgre to
win the meet, with competition for
second place from No. 17 Michigan,
No. 22 Marquette, No. 25 i
State, Ohio and Bowling Green.
The.Wolverines who will be par-
ticipating are Katie McGregor, rfie
Froud, Lisa Ouellet, Elizabeth
Kampfe, Katie Clifford, Michelle
Slater and Allison Noe.
Throughout the season,
Michigan's weakness has been its
runners in the back of the pace But
with two weeks to practicebefore
this meet and a strong perfornteae
at Big Tens, the Wolverines e
been slowly closing the gap-between
the third and fourth runners
The key for the Wolveries,if
they're to run down Wisconsin, is to
keep themselves tightly packdd and
work together.
"We have to get Wisconsin's pack
split up if we hope to beat the,"
Michigan coach Mike MeGuire
said. "At Big Tens, we gave thei a
really good run, so now we ha4e
close in."
McGuire said that Michigapis
capable of putting at leastfiv of
the seven runners in the tdlp 25.
Strong performances by the front
runners - McGregor, Kampfe ahd
Froud - will be advatageons -to
the Wolverines, but will not win the
meet.
"Our success is predicatedJ on
seven," McGuire said. "We can:t
much better out of McGregor and
Kampfe, but there are people capa-
ble of splitting them up, so every-
one's role is important."
The course at Indiana is different
than the one Michigan ran two
weeks ago at Big Tens. It may prove
advantageous for. the IW le ines
since it is similar to the 'Mic igan
golf course, on which they pea tice.
"It's a good challenge for the-
letes and a good spectator course
McGuire said. "Indiana will tell you
that it is tougher than otrs; bt I
don't think it is."
Whether the course is difficult or
not, the Wolverines are confident.
"We're at an advantage thsyear,
Clifford said. "Because we have
such strong front runners, and we're
working together and etoiira gng
each other, we can push each in
to the front."
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