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February 08, 1999 - Image 13

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The Michigan Daily, 1999-02-08

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The Michigan Daily - SportsMonday - February 8, 1999 - 5B

Quote of the weekend
No matter who you play, any day
you can get your fanny beat.
- Minnestoa coach Clem Haskin::
on the parity in the Big Tet

iiI Michgaan

75

Player of the game
htn guard Louis Bulock
Bullock led Michigan to its first win in ix
games, scoring a game-high 27 points on 9-
for-I shooting from the ficl. He was perfct
from the charity stripe, making all eigh t ohis
shots, and he grabbed six rebounds.

j Minnesota

65

Me ff o ti
admirable,
refreshig
d love to be able to explain the
Michigan basketball team. And with
e way the Wolverines have been
trating their ranked foes this season,
I'm sure a lot of Big Ten coaches feel
the same way.
But after yesterday's win over
Minnesota, I'm as baffled as can be.
Not because the Wolverines beat the
Gophers. As coach Brian Ellerbe said
after the game, Michigan knew it could
beat Minnesota. They proved that by
giving the Gophers a scare in Williams
- a a few weeks ago before losing
by six. It was the closest they had come
all season to winning a conference
game on the road.
No, the win
over Minnesota
was surprising for
an entirely differ-
ent reason. It was
surprising - and .;
refreshing -
because, after los- ANDY
ifive straight,
the Wolverines LATACK
had every right to Counter
roll over and die. Latack
With the
exception of yesterday's matchup and a
later contest with Penn State, the
winnable games remaining on
Michigan's schedule seemed few and
far between. Having passed the mid-
t of the Big Ten schedule,
higan would now be facing teams
for the second time.
All those feel-good wins the
Wolverines notched over ranked confer-
ence foes in Crisler Arena? The 'don't-
count-us-out-yet' stunners against some
of the most talented teams in the con-
ference and the nation?
Michigan would now be facing those
squads - still ranked and bent on
some revenge - in places like
blison and Bloomington. With
higan still searching for its first Big
Ten road win, that did not bode well.
There were plenty of other reasons
for Michigan to pack it in against the
Gophers.
First of all, the possibility that the
Wolverines will miss the postseason for
the first time in 16 years is shockingly
realistic. Usually at this time of year,
th are either fighting for or shoring
berth in the NCAA Tournament.
But right now, nobody's even think-
ing NIT. That's because Michigan needs
to win every single one of its remaining
games to be eligible for the tournament.
The NIT requires a .500 record, and
Michigan will have to run the table and
finish at 15-14 to be eligible for the
Not-So-Big Dance.
Teams are having enough trouble
putting together back-to-back wins in
tlis stacked conference. Six in a row is
vially impossible.
Especially against schools that are
playing for their postseason lives.
While the Wolverines seem likely to be
watching the tournament from the same
place as you and I next month, the
teams they are facing are either battling
to be included in the Big Dance or sim-
ply playing to improve their seeding.
"We're playing to get the 17 or 18
11% we need to make the tournament,"
nesota coach Clem Haskins said
after the game, reflecting the current
attitude of at least seven other coaches
in the league.

So it might seem that Michigan did-
n't have a lot riding on the game.
The Wolverines certainly came out as
ifthey were throwing in the towel.
Falling behind, 10-0, in the first five
minutes, they looked intent on extend-
ing their lengthy streak without a field
g a mark set in the last ten minutes,
oIfiursday's debacle at Northwestern.
But as everyone was giving up on the
Wolverines, they inexplicably roared
back, with Louis Bullock's 12-footer at
the buzzer putting them up 35-24 at the
half. Suddenly, they were playing like
they had something riding on the game.
And Minnesota looked bewildered.
Why are these guys playing so hard?
Don't they know the only way they'll be
atOtournament is if they buy tickets?
The Wolverines didn't seem to care.
They kept firing away, holding off a late
Minnesota run and playing with the
energy and precision of a top-25 team.
Maybe that's why they keep beating
them.
D-+.d m-.lsAa%...:- r mnro.Hiat

One-on-one chats
and video tape

Michigan stats

SCORING
PLAYER
Bullock
Reid
Smith
Asselin
Vigier

Vs. MINN.
27
10
10

SEASON
71.
13.4 ,
8.5A
8.2

Key

'M' revival

RBOUND iG

By Josh Kleinbaum
Daily Sports Editor
With his team standing on the edge
of the cliff, in the midst of a spiraling
five-game losing streak, having just
lost to perennial Big Ten doormat
Northwestern by a whopping 22
points, Michigan men's basketball
coach Brian Ellerbe knew he had to
do something.
With just three games to regroup
before facing No. 18 Minnesota, he
turned to the miracles of modern
technology - TVs and VCRs - and
had his team watch a tape of the
Northwestern game that night.
"As a coach, you have to pick your
spots" to show the tape, Ellerbe said.
"At that time, we needed to do it."
So Ellerbe did it. With their hair
still wet from their post-game show-
ers, the Wolverines gathered in a
hotel room and watched their worst
offensive performance since 1951 -
they scored a meager 34 points and
just 12 in the second half,
They watched the tape and saw a
lot of positives - solid defense and
rebounding, primarily - but they
also saw a team that wasn't executing
offensively. The Wolverines were not
setting screens properly, their shot
selection was poor, they weren't get-
ting open looks at the basket. The
result? They couldn't score if their
lives depended on it.
Ellerbe didn't even say much as his
team watched the Evanston Massacre
- he didn't have to. His players did
all of the talking.
"The guys wanted to watch the
tape and critique themselves,"
Ellerbe said. "They just talked

amongst themselves."
Then Ellerbe took the proactive
approach - he had a chat with each
of his players, one-on-one, making
sure their minds were where they
needed to be.
"Misery loves company," Ellerbe
said. "I wanted to make sure it wasn't
getting any."
So he'd grab a player at night,
before he want to sleep. Another one
the next morning in the airport, one
on the plane, one in Ann Arbor over
lunch.
"He kept everybody together,
encouraging us," Michigan guard
Louis Bullock said after his 27-point
performance against Minnesota. "He
told us to stick together, as team-
mates and as friends"
But as yesterday's game against
No. 18 Minnesota unfolded, it
appeared that Ellerbe's efforts were
for naught. The Gophers scored the
first 10 points and it looked as if
Michigan was heading towards
another embarrassing loss. But just
five minutes into the game, Bullock
made a break-away layup, snapping a
14:50 field goal drought going back
to the Northwestern fiasco and snap-
ping Michigan out of its sleep.
Then the Wolverines responded, all
of them. Bullock scored his 27, but
he was just one of four to score in
double-digits for the Wolverines.
What's more, they played with heart,
diving for loose balls, hustling up
and down the court, playing with the
sense of urgency they've lacked the
past five games.
And in their 75-65 victory, they
reaped the rewards.

Vignier
Asselin
Bullock
FIELD GOAL
Asselin
Young
Vignier

7
6

7,5
5,7
4.2

PERCENTAGE
.800 .528
N/A A489
.429 .481

FREE THROW PERCENTAGE
Bullock 1.000 .875
Reid .833 .813
Jones .600 .745

ASSISTS
Reid
Bulock
Smith
STEALS
Smith
Bullock
Reid

4
3
0

1.9

1

1.3
13
12

MARGARET MYERS/Daily
Michigan center Pete Vignier grabs one of his eight rebounds in yesterday's upset
over Minnesota. The junior added ten points and a block

Blue ends s'kid,
upsets Gophers
GOPHERS
Continued from Page 11B
Quincy Lewis. The 6-foot-7 senior was held quiet for the
majority of the contest before busting loose with less than
10 minutes left.
"I think we made it tough for (Lewis) to get his points,"
Bullock said. "We made things really hard for him."
Nevertheless, Lewis overcame Michigan's defensive
sets by scoring 23 points on subpar 7-of-18 shooting from
the field. But 14 of Lewis' points came during a
Minnesota run that cut Michigan's lead of 21 to 5, mak-
ing the score 67-62. During the six minute stretch, Lewis
hit four jump shots including a couple of 3-pointers.
But that was as close as the the Golden Gophers got, as
Michigan iced the game at the charity stripe by hitting six
of its last eight attempts.
But Lewis' efforts were too little too late. That might
not have been the case if Minnesota guard Kevin Clark
had played to form. Averaging 15.7 points coming into
the game, Clark was held to six points on 2-of-10 shoot-
ing.
The Wolverines "hit open shots and their big men set
set screens to get them open," Clark lamented. "We got
good shots and didn't any. They were a better team than
us today."
After getting down early, Michigan made its move mid-
way through the first half, grabbing its first lead at 14-13
with a Brandon Smith jump shot. From there, the
Wolverines dominated the remainder of the first half to
close out the period leading 35-24.
Michigan overcame its sluggish start by stepping up
defensively and countering with a 10-0 run of its own, led
by Bullock's six points points during the four-minute
stretch.

CO NFERENCE
Standings and Results
Conference Overall
Team W L W L
Michigan State 9 1 20 4
Ohio State 7 3 17 6
Wisconsin 7 4 19 5
Minnesota 6 4 15 5
Northwestern 6 4 15 6
Iowa 6 5 15 6
indiana 5 5 18 7
Purdue 4 5 16 7
Michigan 4 7 10 14
Penn State 2 9 10. 11
illinois 2 9 10 13
Saturday's games:
Illinois 53, Wisconsin 51
Michigan State $5, Iowa 81
Northwestern 71, Penn State 67
Ohio State 80, Purdue 69
Yesterday's game:
Michigan 75, Minnesota 65
Top 25 weekend resus
I Connecticut (20-1) beat No.4 Stanford 70.59.
2. Duke (23-) beat Georgia Tech 87-79.
3. nCinai (21-2) lost to DePaul 61-60, OT
4 Stanord (19.4) lost to No.1 Connecticut 70-59.
S. Kentucky (19-6) lost to Alabama 62-58.
6. Auburn (22-1) beat ouisiana State 80-54.
7. Maryland (20-4) beat Virginia 88-72.
8. Michigan State (24) beat No.14 Iow 95-81.
9. St. John's (18-6) beat Pittsburgh 886.
10. Arizona (164) beat Washington State 8179.
11. Wisconsin (19-5) lost to linos 53st
12. North Camlina (19-6) beat Florida State, 98.64.
13, UCLA (16-5) beat Oregon State 85s67
14. lowa (15-6) lost to No.8 Mihigan State 95-81.
15. Ohio State (17-6) beat No, 18 Purdue 80-69.
16. Syracuse (16-7) lst to Villaoa 75-60
17. New Mexico (17-6) Wot to Hawaii 72-68 OT.
18 Minnesota (14.6) lost to Michigan 75-65.
18. Purdue (16-7) lost to No. 15 Ohio State 80-69.
20. Utah (18-4) beat Bugnam Young 71.
21 Indiana (18-7)did not pa
22. Col.of Chalestn (21-2) beat The Ctadel 60-39.
23. Arkasa(16-7) lost to Vanderbilt 73-69.
24. Missouri (1-5) lost to Nebraska 69-61
25. Miami(15s)beat Geo etownt- 8.
MINNESOTA (65)
F F RED
MIN M-A M-A 0-T A F PTS
Lewis 37 718 57 3-7 0 4 23
Tarver 29 24 5-7 46 1 4 9
Przybilla 30 4-5 24 15 3 4 10
Clark 30 210 00 1-1 2 5 6
Nathaniel 18 0-1 0O000 3 4 0
Sinville 4 00 0-0 00 0 0 0
Ohnstad 13 2-6 00 00 0 0 6
Simmons 19 47 0-0 0-4 3 0 9
Stanford 3 01 00 00 0 0 0
Broxsie 5 0-0 00 00 0 0 0
Sanden 12 14 0-0 0-2 1 2 2
Totals 200 2256 12-181430 13 23 65
FG%:.393,.FT%:.667.3-point FG:9-24,.375
(Lewis 48, Clark 27, Ohnstad 24 Simmons 1-4,
Sanden 0-1). Stocks: 1 (Lews. Steals: 5 (Clark 3,
Simmons, Lewis). Turnovers: 11 (Simmons 3,
Nathaniel 2, Przybilla 2, Lewis 2, Sanden,
Ohnstad). Technical Fouls: Ohnstad.
MICHIGAN (75)
FG FT RE
MN M-A MA O0-T A F PT
Asselin 37 45 2-4 1-7 0 1 10
Smith 18 2-3 a2 .1 0 5 4
S Vignier 33 3-7 4-5 38 0 4 10
Reid 38 410 56 0-2 4 1 16
Bullock 38 9-11 8-8 1-6 3 1 27
Jones 27 1-5 6-10 1-3 2 4 8
Young 9 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 3 0
Totals 200 2341 25-35 7-27 s 19 75
FG%: .561. FT%: .714. 3pint FG: 4-10, .400 (Reid
3-5, Bullock 1-3,.Jones 0-1, Smith 0-1). Blocks: 5
(Asselin 4, Vignier). Steals: 3 (Smith, Bullock,
Reid). Turnovers: 12 (Asselin 3, Young 2, Jones 2
Reid 2, Smith). Technical Fouls: none.
Minnesota.................24 41 - 65
Michigan .........................35 40-75
At: Crisler Arena
Attendance: 11,718

NATHAN RUFFER/Daily
Michigan forward Brandon Smith shoots over Minnesota's center Joel Przybilia in Michigan's 75-65 vic-
tory yesterday. SrIth had just four points for the Wolverines before fouling out.

Spartans roll on the road, topple Iowa

IOWA CITY (AP) -The final score
- Michigan State 95, Iowa 81 -
looked semi-respectable for the
Hawkeyes, but it was just a mirage.
Just like their 4-0 mark in the Big Ten
Conference only a month ago.
The eighth-ranked Spartans (20-4
overall) scored virtually at will
Saturday, leading by 31 points with
about seven minutes remaining as they
showed why they lead the conference
with a 9-1 mark,
MA;Ah;nn t inning its ninth

we got the ball in the open court, we
could really excel. We didn't want to
play a halfcourt game against them,
said guard Charlie Bell, who scored l6
points.
"It's hard to tell which ones are
guards and which ones are forwards,
they run the court so wel" Iowa coach
Tom Davis said. "Not many teams have
a guard court like that."
When they weren't scoring easy bas-
kets, the Spartans made Iowa pay from
the nerimeter. They sunk 8 of 16 3-point

points, hit a 3-pointer with 3:15 remain-
ing that sealed the outcome by giving
the Buckeyes (7-3, 17-6) a 75-64 lead.
Jaraan Cornell led Purdue (4-5, 16-7)
With 18 points, while Carson
Cunningham finished with 15 points
and Brian Cardinal 12.
The Buckeyes led the whole game
but saw a 24-point lead early in the sec-
ond half drop to eight with 3:43 remain-
ing when Cornell hit a 15-foot jumper
to make it 72-64.
Ohio State, which beat Purdue 72-43

62 lead at the 2:21 mark. Eschmeyer
and Steve Lepore took control from
there, scoring seven points down the
stretch. Lepore, who led the team with
18 points, hit three free-throws in the
last 14 seconds to ice the win for
Northwestern.
ILLINOIS 53, No. 11 WISCONSIN 51:
Illinois' Cory Bradford was sick and
tired of losing tight games. So he did
something about it.
"These close games are killing me.
You've got to just suck it up and get

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