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February 17, 1998 - Image 9

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1998-02-17

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

EN'S NCAA
AKETBALL
(9) New Mexico at
UNLV, inc.
(24) XAVIER 96,
(23) G. Washington 86

iiB

(19) West Virginia 71,
MARSHALL 58
(22) T. CHRISTIAN 79,
Southern Methodist 70
(4) Kansas at
Colorado, inc.

WOMEN'S NCAA
BASKETBALL
(1) Tennessee 91,
(13) VANDERBILT 60
(2) CONNECTICUT 98,
Maine 70
(8) N.C. STATE 75,
Maryland 53

U~be AidtI~jm kiq

Tracking 'M' teams
The Michigan women's swimming team has a big
weekend coming up. The Wolverines will try to win
their 12th-straight Big Ten Championship when the
three-day meet starts Thursday in Bloomington.

(17) SYRACUSE 69, PENN STATE 90
Villanova 64 Ohio State 81
generous
lets Turco

Tuesday
February 17, 1998

9

defense

Round two

shine

By f ed Unk
Daily Sports Writer
S~imetimcs life as the goaltender for
e;ulichigan hockey team can be a little
Wrnig. If the Wolverines are playing
welZhe goaltender might not face many
she He might not get the opportunity
to show his teammates what he can do.
Fortunately for Michigan netminder
Marty Turco, his teammates look out for
him, and every now and then, they let
him face a good scoring chance.
Last weekend against No. 9 Miami
(Ohio) and Northern Michigan, his
ammates gave up no less than six
Ireakaways. Turco responded, stopping
all six opportunities.
"On that whole breakaway stuff... the
defense never gets to see Marty make
saves," Michigan defenseman Bubba
Berenzweig said. "So we wanted to let a
few go by because it's fun watching him
make those saves."
And fortunately for his teammates, it
doesn't bother Turco when defensemen
et a player slip past them.
"I don't mind," Turco said about stop-
ping breakaways. "That's just my job"
In last weekend's victories over the
RedHawks and the Wildcats, Turco
made just 34 saves. But thanks in part to
his teammates giving up so many excel-
lent scoring chances, Turco was named
CCHA defensive player of the week.
A sprawling save he made late in the
third period against Miami's Tim Leahy,
preserve Michigan's one-goal lead,
as good enough to appear on ESPN's
"Plays of the Week"
But although Turco's play earned him
recognition, it isn't anything out of the
ordinary for the Michigan netminder.
four weekends ago against Miami,
Turco played poorly, giving up seven
goals, as the Wolverines were swept by
the RedHawks. Since then, the senior
netminder has played exceptionally, giv-
g up just seven goals in his past five
Aines. In that time, the Wolverines have
gone 5-0 and extended their lead in the

"... we wanted to let
a few go by because
it's fun watching him
make those saves."
- Bubba Berenzweig
Michigan hockey defenseman
on goaltender Marty Turco's play
CCHA to three points over second-place
Michigan State.
Turco hasn't been bombarded with
shots, but he's been a factor in most
games, keeping opponents off the board
until Michigan's offense can build a lead.
Turco again figures to play a key role
this weekend as the Wolverines take on
Michigan State twice. Against the
Spartans, the games figure to be close
checking contests - the kind of games
that can come down to goaltending.
Michigan State likes to slow things
down, playing the neutral zone trap. And
while the Wolverines will need to keep
their mistakes to a minimum, when they
do give up good chances, Turco will be
called on to do his job - to keep the
puck out of the net.
"Michigan State doesn't give up very
many goals," Berenzweig said. "So if we
want to win that game we can't give up
very many goals. It's going to come
down to discipline. We're not going to
get away with the stuff that we got away
with against Northern - unless, of
course, Marty comes up big again"
On several occasions this year, Turco's
play has been the difference between
winning and losing. After the Northern
game, Berenzweig was asked about
Michigan's goals against Northern goal-
tender Duane Hoey. Berenzweig
responded simply, "Well, their goalie
isn't as good as Marty."
In most games this season, the oppos-
ing goalie hasn't been as good as Turco.
And that's been a big edge for Michigan.

Cleaves, rowdy
faerans await 'M'
By Jim Rose
Daily Sports Editor
The last time Michigan played Michigan State,
Spartans point guard Mateen Cleaves did not play well.
So, Michigan State lost.
Since the 79-69 Michigan victory on Jan, 10, Cleaves
has elevated his game, and with it his team, to the top
of the Big Ten. The Spartans, at 11-2 (18-5 overall),
lead the conference. And, as Michigan coach Brian
Ellerbe said yesterday, Cleaves "could be one of the
three or four best point guards in the country. He would
probably be your MVP right now in the Big Ten."
Strong praise, indeed, but ------------------
Ellerbe is not alone in his Tonight's game
assessment of the Spartans' Who: Michigan vs.
sophomore leader. Coaches Michigan Statc
and players around the Big Where: Breslin Center
Ten are heaping praise on When: 730
the dynamic point guard, TV: ESPN
and the rule seems to be that Notables: The Wolverines are
as Cleaves goes, so goes Oflc of only two teams to beat
the Spartans in Big Ten play.
Michigan State. Michigan handled the
"He's what makes their Spartans easily onjan. 10,
team tick," Louis Bullock 79-69.
said. "Everyone feeds off of
him."
All of this makes the job ahead of Michigan (8-4,
18-7), if not an easy one, at least one that is clearly
defined: stop Cleaves. The task presents itself tonight
at 7:35, as Michigan travels to East Lansing to face th6,
Spartans at the Breslin Center,
And while Cleaves gets plenty of attention for his
tendency to score in spurts, there's another, less promi-
nent statistic that's far more impressive than his 153
points per game.
Michigan State is 18-1 when Cleaves has at least six
assists. When he has five or fewer, the Spartans are
winless in three games.
But as the assists-to-victories ratio suggests, the
Spartans have not vaulted to the top of the Big Ten on
one set of shoulders alone. In fact, the opposite is true.
In their past six games, the Spartans have been led in
scoring by five different people. Cleaves, Jason Klein,
Antonio Smith, Morris Peterson and Charlie Bell have
all taken on some of the scoring burden in recent
weeks. And this, more than any other reason, is why
Ellerbe is so concerned with Cleaves.
"What you want to do is keep him from creating to
make the other guys better," Ellerbe said. "The othr
guys can hurt you when you only think about him."
On Saturday, against Minnesota, it was Klein that
See SPARTANS, Page 10

AP PHOTO
Michigan State guard Mateen Cleaves has the uncanny ability to make his teammates better. The
Spartans have lost just one game in which Cleaves has collected more than five assists.
Healthy Cleaves leadsSte

The State News
Mateen Cleaves has something he's never had
during his Michigan State basketball career.
Good health.
When Cleaves, a sophomore point guard,
announcedin 1996 - during his senior year at
Flint Northern High - that he would attend
Michigan State, he was projected to continue a
strong point guard tradition in East Lansing.
Cleaves was supposed to etch his name next to
Michigan State point guard elites Earvin "Magic"
Johnson, Scott Skiles, Mark Montgomery and
Eric Snow.
But it wasn't going to be an overnight success.

"I had been a confident player all my life until
last year," Cleaves said.
Cleaves was hampered through most of last
season with the lingering effects of a back injury.
After recovering from the back injury last sum-
mer, Cleaves got what he describes as the scare of
his summer when he injured his shoulder during a
pickup game with teammate Morris Peterson in
August.
"It was another one of those trash-talking
games,' Cleaves said. "I was scared for a quick
second there. I was thinking, 'Not again.' I worked
too hard to get hurt again."
See CLEAVES, Page 10

I

dI

HI

I I

PAUL TALANIAN/Daily
hen Michigan is controlling the puck, as sophomore Andrew Merrick is here,
arty Turco has a tendency to get lonely at the other end of the ice.

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