tscoreboard-.- f-dsanr Y ftU Tracking 'M' teams
NIT BASKETBALL NEW JERSEY5, NBA The Michigan men's swimming team is in ninth plac@
CHAMPIONSHIP Pittsburgh 3 BASKETBALL with 48 points after the first day of the NCAA
CAlFmNA 6 , CALAR, inc. COlaNd 6, Championships in Indianapolis. ChriS Thompson, the
corommanon Washington HOUSTON 113, Wolverines' top finisher, placed third in the 50-yard
XAVIER 106, PHOENIX, inc. Toronto 104 freestyle.
Oregon 75 St. Louis San Antonio
NHL HOCKEY VANCOUVER, inc. DENVER, inc. Friday
BOSTON 3, Dallas Phoenix March 2,F1999
Chicago 3 F/OT LOS ANGELES, inc. PORTLAND, inc.
Welcome to Woostah
path o season
RCESTER, Mass. -- As the Michigan
hockey team circled the ice at the Worcester
Centrum Centre, coach Red Berenson called
his players over to center ice.
The ice at the Centrum is typical of the ice surface
at any arena Michigan has played in this season -
cold and frozen with many random lines painted on it.
Despite the cookie-cutter feel
of The Centrum's ice, Berenson
beckoned his troops to center
ice anyway. As the team congre-
gated around him, Berenson
pointed to the NCAA symbol
below him and mentioned how
the Wolverines have always
U. played well on surfaces with the
BERKA NCAA symbol painted on them.
Teeing And with that, the third leg of
Off Michigan's championship run
began. While the actual first-
round game with Denver doesn't start until 8:30
tonight, that Michigan postseason feeling is at fever
This fever has led the Wolverines to success in the
past. Michigan has made it past the regional round to
the Frozen Four in six of the last seven seasons, includ-
ing the past four. Like the Kentucky men's basketball
program, Michigan is an undeniable force in the post-
A month ago, that last statement would have been
followed with a drumroll and a few rounds of laughter
from the audience. The cackles would have been espe-
cially loud up in East Lansing, where Michigan State
coach Ron Mason would be taking great joy in poking
fun at his rival.
Mason seemed to pretty much write the Michigan
obituary Feb. 20. After defeating the Wolverines, 3-1,
in Joe Louis Arena, Mason said that the game was "the
best both teams couldplay."
A seemingly innocent comment, Mason's statement
pretty much said that Michigan wasn't so good this
Maybe Mason is right. Maybe Michigan isn't that
great this year. The Wolverines have had streaks where
scoring goals was as difficult as finding a good park-
ing spot on State Street.
Michigan has also had streaks where it spent more
time in the penalty box than on the ice. The Wolverines
led the CCHA in penalty minutes, not exactly the stat
NCAA East Regional
Hockey hopes to win
another NCAA crown
By Chris Duprey
Daily Sports Editor
WORCESTER, Mass. - Maybe it
was just an act, maybe it wasn't.
Either way, the Michigan hockey
team looked as relaxed as it ever has
during its final full practice yesterday
before meeting Denver tonight in the
first round of the NCAA Tournament.
The lion's share of the preparation
is done. All of the Terrible Tuesday
practices, the videotape scrutiny and
the conditioning is over with.
For the Wolverines, it's a matter of
taking a deep breath, digging in their
skates and playing Michigan hockey.
"You really have to compete, play
physical and get second efforts. You
can't give up unearned goals at this
point (in the season), because it's hard
to get them back," Michigan coach
Red Berenson said about his keys to
winning. "We can play well in big
games. Our next game has to be our
Meeting that directive will be a tall
order for the Wolverines, who played
Northern Michigan to near-perfection
in the CCHA final this past Saturday.
Michigan's season has been a true
pendulum, and it's on the upswing
But Denver is just as hot, winning
........... ....... .. ... ....
Denver vs. Michigan
When: 8:30 p.m.
TV: WTVS and WFUM -
channel 3 in the dorns, 26 off
campus, and channel 12 in all of
Radio: WCBN 88.3 FM and
WTKA 1050 AM
its last nine games, including a 4-
victory over NCAA tournamct*'
favorite North Dakota in the WCHA
Championship game last weekend.
All in all, it's shaping up to be a true
No. 4-No. 5 seed battle - where the
game can go either way, where emo-
tion and intangibles are as valuable a
The Michigan seniors know this,
and they worked hard at yesterday's
official practice to set a comfortab
tone, telling jokes and razzing th
teammates as if this weekend is just
another pair of games in the CCHA.
See REGIONALS, Page 9
Michigan freshman Mike Comrie will have the unique opportunity of battling his older brother Paul tonight,
when the Wolverines battle Denver in the first round of the NCAA Tournament,
that Berenson was hoping his team would be on top of.
And Michigan had to deal with having a freshman
goaltender. Not that Josh Blackburn performed poorly
- not at all, he made the CCHA all-Rookie team -
it's just that he was still a wet-behind-the-ears fresh-
All these arguments against the Wolverines are
valid. Michigan isn't the best team in the nation this
year. That title more than likely is held by North
Dakota -- where half of the state's population plays for
But the best regular-season team doesn't always win
the title. Michigan knows that. In 1997, they set a
school record for wins, but fell short of the title. In
1996 and last year, Michigan was the underdog, but
came home with a NCAA trophy.
What does this mean for Michigan's title chances
this season? About as much as the position of Pluto in
May - nothing. Being a fifth-seed, the lowest seed its
ever received in this tournament, the Wolverines are
going to have to pull some big rabbits out of their hat
to capture the trophy again.
But then again, the NCAA logo does strange and
wonderful things for this team. And if Michigan makes
it to the Frozen Four next weekend, the logo will be
right with them.
- TJ Berka can be reached via e-mail at
'ast playoff wins
The Matchups OFFENSE: A flurry of offensive pro-
duction in the last month of the seasoib
By Mark Francestutti has Michigan averaging 5.4 tallies'a
Daily Sports Writer game in the last nine games. Denver
When the Wolverines tango with also has a quick scoring ability and has
their NCAA first-round regional a fine top line headed by senior Paul
opponent, Denver, tonight, Michigan Comrie. The Pioneers are well-round-
will face ateam they know little about. ed offensively, but Michigan can say
Not having played the Pioneers in the same thanks to great performancer
18 years, the Wolverines have to come by its third and fourth lines in t*
out, play their game and hope that they playoffs. On a neutral site in the
out-muscle Denver for a victory. NCAA Tournament, defensive lapses
What we do know about the and turnovers will most likely give one
Pioneers, is that they are a cinderella team the offensive edge.
team this season. Preseason predictors EDGE: EVEN
placed Denver eighth in the WCHA. DEFENSE: In the Denver-North
But the Pioneers fought off a dismal Dakota WCHA championship game, it
11-25-2 record the previous year and was apparent that the Pioneers frus-
finished third behind North Dakota trated the offensive-minded Fighting
and Colorado College. Sioux by taking away North Dakots's
Here are the matchups for tonight's passing lanes. That spells trouble fo
contest. See MATCHUPS, Page
n .CALL FOR FREE *j~~ N O
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Sponsored by the Frederick A. a Barbara Erb Envi anagement Institute,
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the University of Michigan International Institut e Latin and Caribbean Studies Program
For more information see http://wwwumichedu/-uofmistf/conf99ftml
Jimmy John opened his first store in Charleston@
IL in 1983. Today he has a whole bunch all over
the place, including here.
- Q: HEY, JIMMY JOHN! What ore the entry require-
ments for your Jimmy John's Country Club?
- Bill Hanley, Glen Ellyn, IL
A: A few bucks and a healthy appetite. But watch out for the
Q: HEY, JIMMY JOHN! Counting the Slim Jims, I fig-
ure you have 22 sandwiches on your menu.
- Kent Pitts, Penn State University
A: I'll bet you're there on a math scholarship, Kent!
Q: HEY, JIMMY JOHN! Can you translate the Latin
phrase "Vini Vidi Vito?"
-Ben Dassie, Boston, MA
A: Sure, Ben. "I came, I saw, I ate the best Italian sub with
Genoa salami, Provolone cheese and gourmet Italian sauce.
E-Mail us at:
"YOUR MOM WANTS YOU TO EAT AT JD