Thursday, October 28 1999 - The Michigan Daily - 15A
JV-en's harriers to play underdog role
By Jon Schwartz
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan men's cross country
team is heading into Saturday's Big
Ten Championship in State College
in an unfamiliar position.
'Despite the eighth-ranked
olverines' recent success, facing
o. 5 Wisconsin will be a much
While Michigan has lost several
key players over the past years, the
Badgers return the same team that
they ran last year.
Michigan's coach, Ron Warhurst,
said that he feels that the leader will
probably make his move after the
second or third mile, before which he
expects a large pack to be running
"It's going to be a tight one," he
said. "They have the nod, though,
because they have their seven back
from last year."
Although the team is different,
Warhurst's training regimens remain
virtually the same. After the several
weeks of 100-mile plus training ear-
lier in the season, he has tapered the
schedule down to a comfortable 70
to 80 miles.
"We haven't changed anything
from the past two to three years and
we were successful then," senior co-
captain Jay Cantin said. "I don't see
why we can't be successful now."
Warhurst expressed his satisfac-
tion with the team's recent practices.
"We had a very nice workout this
past Wednesday and Friday," he said.
"And on Monday, everyone looked
The Wolverines have one major
advantage: They ran on the Penn
State course earlier this season in the
Spiked Shoe Invitational and placed
third out of 22 teams.
"It's not nearly as tough as our
course," Warhurst said. "When we
ran it earlier, we were coming off our
toughest training. Now that we've
taken it down, we should be ready."
Cantin said that for Michigan to be
successful, the Wolverines must
focus on themselves, because it is
almost impossible to run well when
your mind is on the other runners.
"It's going to be tough," Cantin
said, "because I'll be racing (Matt)
Downin and (Jay) Schoenfelder,
Wisconsin's top two runners. Steve
(Lawrence) and I just have to beat
"But you kind of key off of them
because they're the two studs and
you have to run your own race."
Both Warhurst and Cantin agreed
that the main challenge for the team
is going to be making sure that the
Wolverines fourth through sixth run-
ners place times that can keep them
Warhurst thinks that the top four
would be two Michigan runners and
two Wisconsin runners, but that the
crux of the race lies in who comes in
"You're only as good as your fifth
man," Cantin said. "I think that if
we're going to beat Wisconsin, that's
where we'll do it."
Clearly, though, one of the tough-
est elements of Saturday's meet will
be the Wolverines' ability to stay
within themselves and not be intimi-
dated by the Badgers' threat.
"All we have to do is match what-
ever they do," Warhurst said. "There
are no time outs. Once the gun goes
off, they have to think hard and run
LOUIS BROW%, D
Jay Cantin and his teammates will have to improve upon their excellent recent
performances in order to run with Wisconsin at Saturday's Big Ten Championship.
cross country looks to regain
respect at Big Ten Championships
Sales or Marketing?
Daily Sports Writers
In 1997, Elizabeth Kampfe ran to
a second-place finish at the Big Ten
In 1999, Kampfe and the women's
Qross country team will need to bring
back the success of the past to sal-
yage an otherwise disappointing sea-
The 1997 one-two punch of Katie
McGregor and Kampfe (then a
sophomore) was not enough to
knock off perennial Big Ten favorite
Wisconsin. This year, Wisconsin
seems all but assured of victory at
Rig Tens, and Michigan has set the
realistic goal of a respectable sec-
'Wisconsin has been favored all
ong," Michigan coach Mike
cGuire said. "They basically have
everybody back from last year, and
it's up to the rest of us to fight for
For Kampfe, the two years since
I97 have been a painful growth
experience. A shin injury which was-
n't been properly diagnosed has
hampered her progress and made
training and competing a struggle.
Kampfe acknowledges that 1997 was
"The main difference between
then and now has been my shins.
They just weren't a problem then,"
Kampfe said. "I'd love to be back
there, and even improve on where I
was, but you've got to just fight
through the pain. I've taken consid-
erable time off, but the pain comes
back. It's frustrating."
Saturday, the team joins their Big
Ten competitors in State College to
gauge the success or failure of the
entire season. Kampfe said there's
still hope for team salvation. The two
weeks between the Wolverine
Invitational - McGuire considered
Michigan's fifth-place finish there a
failure - and Saturday's Big Ten
championship have been positive.
"Sometimes it's hard to see the
positives, but you never know,"
Kampfe said. "Any imeet, say this
weekend, things can turn around."
Wisconsin, ranked fifth nationally,
will clearly set the pace for the rest
of the conference. Minnesota and
Michigan State, ranked No. 17 and
No. 18 respectively, will provide
Michigan with its competition. Lisa
Ouellet, Katie Clifford and Kampfe
will keep their eyes on the top few
runners from those schools. Most of
Michigan"s runners like the course
at State College, including Kampfe.
"There's a. hill and the end after
Elizabeth Kampfe is looking to lead her
team at the Big Ten Championships.
about two miles of flat running,"
Kampfe said. "Just when you think
things are going easy, here comes the
hill. You get your confidence at the
beginning, but it challenges you at
"Big Tens are easy to get excited
about. We've been running well this
week, and we've been running
together. We'll be ready to go."
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