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January 30, 1998 - Image 13

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The Michigan Daily, 1998-01-30

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The Michigan Daily - Friday, January 30, 1998 - 13

Berenson hopes to avoid
getting trapped by Irish

By Chris Farah
Daily Sports Writer
As coach of the Michigan hockey
team, one would naturally expect Red
Berenson to be talking about boxing.
Wait a minute, boxing?
But the Wolverines' recent offensive
difficulties against the neutral zone trap
used by teams like Miami (Ohio) and
Michigan State have Berenson throwing
some punches - figuratively, of course.
"Do you want to play or not?"
Berenson said. "It's like if you and I
boxed, and you didn't want to punch -
you just stood there. Do you want to box,
or don't you?"
Michigan (14-4-1 CCHA, 20-6-1
overall) will probably have to deal with
the same kind of system tonight, when it
matches up with Notre Dame (8-8-3, 13-
11-3) at Joyce Fieldhouse. The
Wolverines will travel back to Yost Ice
Arena for their next game against the
Fighting Irish tomorrow evening.
Team after team in the CCHA has
been reverting to the neutral zone trap,
sending only one player to forecheck
while keeping the other four back at cen-
ter ice - waiting for the opposition to
make a mistake.
Although Michigan is currently atop
the CCHA standings, teams using the
neutral zone trap have had some success

Up next
Who: Notre Dame
Where: Joyce Field House tonight
and Yost Ice Arena Saturday night
When Both games at 7 p.m.
slowing down the Wolverines' offense.
Miami held Michigan to just one goal
in their first game last weekend, beating
the Wolverines 3-1. In their second game,
the RedHawks kept Michigan at one goal
until late in the third period - enough
for Miami to pull out a victory, 4-3.
"They're coaching to survive,"
Berenson said. "And they're winning
games. They're protecting their weaker
defensemen, they're protecting their
goalie.
"Notre Dame's doing it, Northern
Michigan's doing it. Most of the teams in
our league are playing a trap."
But Berenson said Michigan's oppo-
nents aren't entirely to blame for the
Wolverines' offensive woes.
"In a way, you're putting the game on
the line by putting certain players on the
ice," he said. "You need to trust that they
care about it as much as you do. There are
players who are learning how important
every shift is, every play, every pass."
As Michigan's captain; Matt Herr is
undoubtedly one of the players Berenson
Josh White sucks!

can trust. But lately Herr hasn't been per-
forming to his full capability, offensively.
Herr said last weekend's losses to Miami
should spark the Wolverines to more
focused performances.
"It's not something you forget about'
Herr said. "Two losses shows tip every
day when you look up at our board there,
and you got two losses to Miami. We
have to eliminate a lot of the mistakes we
made last weekend:'
Although Michigan may be itching to
jumpstart its offensive production, the
Wolverines may have to go without one
of their key scorers. Freshman forward
Josh Langfeld is questionable for the
weekend after receiving a knee injury.
"He won't play Friday, and he's a pos-
sibility for Saturday," Berenson said.
"Typically, knees in hockey are either
three days, 10 days or six weeks."
Herr may have to pick tip the slack left
by Langfeld's absence but said he's not
feeling an excessive level of pressure.
"If the shots are coming, and I'm get-
ting the opportunities, and I'm playing
good hockey, that's all I want to do right
now," Herr said. "The goals are going to
come. I'm not going to go four games
without a goal."
Is that a guarantee?
"I'm not making any guarantees,"
Herr said, laughing. "No way, no way."

MARGARET MYERS/Daily
Michigan may have to face Notre Dame this weekend without one of its leading offensive threats. Freshman Josh Langfeld will
probably sit out Friday's game with a knee injury, but may play Saturday against the Fighting Irish.
Jot Hoosiers present high hurdle

By B.J. Luria
Daily Sports Writer
Ten games into the Big Ten season, it
is time for the Michigan women's bas-
ketball team to start all over.
Well, actually, the Wolverines (6-4
Big Ten, 14-6 overall) get to keep the
record that they have, but now it's time
for them to start playing Big Ten oppo-
ents for the second time this season.
Michigan's first repeat opponent of
the season is Indiana, which comes to
Crisler Arena on Sunday for a 2 p.m.
game. The Hoosiers (5-4, 14-8) will
play at Ohio State on Friday, before
they take on Michigan. The Wolverines,
whose last game was Jan. 25, play only
once this weekend and should be fresh
as they try to beat Indiana for the sec-
ond time this season.
Indiana has all the momentum, how-
ever, having defeated No. 6 Illinois and
N. 23 Purdue in two of its last three
games. The Hoosiers lost to Iowa, 64-
61 last Friday before knocking off the
Boilermakers on Sunday.
Michigan and Indiana last met on
Jan. 16 at Assembly Hall. The

Up next
Who: Indiana
Where: Crisler Arena
When: Sunday, 2 p.m.

S

Wolverines jumped out to a 17-point
halftime lead before the Hoosiers cut
the spread to as little as three points in
the second half. Michigan held off the
Indiana charge for a 78-73 victory.
Prior to the game, the Wolverines had
not beaten Indiana since 1993 before
the victory in Bloomington.
Michigan is coming off a thrilling
69-65 overtime victory against Iowa
last Sunday. The Wolverines forced
overtime when Molly Murray nailed a
3-pointer with just seven seconds left in
regulation. In the extra period,
Pollyanna Johns hit several free throws
to ice the game.
This weekend's contest is a matchup
between last week's co-Big Ten players
of the week. Michigan's Stacey Thomas
and Indiana's Kristi Green shared the
award for their play last week. In the
Wolverines' two games last weekend,

the victory over Iowa and a road loss to
Wisconsin, Thomas averaged 1 5.5
points and 10.5 rebounds, recording her
fourth and fifth career double-doubles.
The sophomore guard also grabbed five
steals and leads the Big Ten in the cate-
gory with 65 on the season.
Green collected 16.3 points and 4.6
rebounds per game in Indiana's three
games last week. Despite her short
stature at 5-foot-2, Green is averaging
12.1 points per game and 2.1 rebounds
per game. She leads the nation in free
throw shooting at a whopping 93 per-
cent.
This weekend, the Wolverines should
benefit from the full-time return of its
star center, Johns. The senior has
missed most of Michigan's last three
games with a knee injury, though she
did return to play 16 minutes against
Iowa. Johns ranks ninth in the nation in
field goal percentage.
Joining Johns in the national rank-
ings are Murray, whose 44.8 percent
accuracy on 3-pointers is good for 22nd
in the nation, and Thomas, who ranks
25th in steals with 3.3 steals per game.

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