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September 18, 2000 - Image 13

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-09-18

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

Ulhe Birbigax Bail
PONRT SMP

Sports desk: 647-3336
sportsdesk@umich.edu

SECTION B

I

I

o

escape

from

L. A.

LOUIS BROWN/Daty
ABOVE: Senior Anthony Thomas is corralled by Marques Anderson at the Rose Bowl Saturday. INSET: Kicker Hayden Epstein missed a PAT and two field goals, including a 24-yarder to tie the game.
iVolverines had every opportunity to win this one

P ASADENA, Calif. -- Both were in
tears - on one side, UCLA safety
Jason Stephens - on the other,
Michigan tailback
Anthony Thomas-
Two different play-
ers, two different sto-

i

ries.
For UCLA,
ephens became the
hero, a safety's
dream, intercepting
what could have been
a game-winning pass
from John Navarre.
For Thomas, after
another fine perfor-
mance (24 rushes forl

back to Ann Arbor with a loss that
shouldn't have been.
The tears came not only from the A-
Train on Saturday, but all the way down
to the caboose. Navarre, Epstein, Whit-
ley - young and old - all shared the
blame in this, the first game of the sea-
son.
Yes, after two scrimmages, the
Wolverines finally had to play - to real-
ly show the country what they were
about. Were they national championship
contenders? Were they good enough to
handle a pesky UCLA team? This was
the one game to get them ready for Illi-
nois, Wisconsin and Purdue.
In the end the answer was clear - this
team can't even write up a 'W' when the

pen is handed to it.
UCLA fumbled and stumbled, turning
the ball over three times. The Bruins hurt
themselves with penalties, saving a
Michigan drive or nullifying a huge
UCLA return.
When Anthony Thomas fumbled three
minutes into the game, UCLA fumbled
on the next play.
When James Whitley dropped a cer-
tain interception, the Bruins' Jason
Zdenek dropped one of Navarre's.
Michigan soon built up its 10-point
lead, and every time UCLA would get
close, it would hand the ball to the
Wolverines as if to say "Hey, we're get-
ting a little close. Aren't you supposed to
win?"

It's like UCLA was an older brother
giving his little brother a chance when
they play basketball. You play a little less
'D' - you brick a couple shots.
But younger brothers only get so many
chances before big bro comes and dunks
in little bro's face.
And for Michigan, their little brother
chances ran out.
"We had it in our hands," Whitley said
after the game. "We just couldn't come
up with it."
But - really -what could the
Wolverines come up with?
Here's Lloyd Carr with three minutes
left. On one side of the bench he sees
Hayden Epstein, who has already missed
See FRANCESCUTTI, Page 6B

PASADENA, Calif. - The light smog that capped
the San Gabriel Mountains gave an almost surreal glaze
to the scene Saturday at the Rose Bowl. From the back-
drop, to the sub-capacity crowd, to Michigan's vain
efforts on the field, it seemed as though the event were
being projected onto a screen - almost a revelry in the
delirious California sun.
It didn't seem like it was happening. But it did hap-
pen. No. 3 Michigan gave away a game to No. 17
UCLA and all but eliminated itself from the national
title picture before October.
Junior kicker Hayden Epstein missed two field goals
and a PAT in Michigan's 23-20 loss. The last of
Epstein's failed attempts was a 24-yard opportunity to
tie the game with 3:27 left in the game. The ball
missed, wide left.
Michigan never trailed until Ryan McCann connected
with Ed Ieremia-Stansbury for the game-winning score
with 6:30 remaining.
"It was tough for us," Michigan quarterback John
Navarre said. "We didn't execute, and they capitalized
on our mistakes."
Navarre, the redshirt freshman who has been playing
for injured prodigy Drew Henson, threw an interception
on Michigan's third-and-long last gasp, ending the
game.
Early game jitters turned into a poor second half for
Navarre, who completed one of 1 attempts after the
See BRUINS, Page 6B

MARK
FRANGESCU7TI
The Cutting
Edge
182 yards), hie goes

Reno rides hot streak for
title on Michigan course

Taylor's PK gives Blue
90th-minute victory
SM' squeaks by in final nonconference tune-up

BY Ryan C. Moloney
adly Sports Wrnter
When Michigan's Courtney Reno arrived at
the Michigan golf course clubhouse yesterday
morning, she wasn't rehearsing the victory
speech she would give later that afternoon.
Going into the last round of the Wolverine
invitational, the junior held a 36-hole score of
153 - good for a three-stroke lead over Baylor
teammates Hanna Svenningson and Tara Bate-
man, both tied at 156. While Reno's lead wasn't
Tiger Woods-esque, it was enough of a cushion
t lay it safe.
n other words, Reno wasn't about to pull a
Van de Velde.
"I was thinking, 'stay calm - don't get excit-
ed or cocky, stay confident and let it happen,"'
Reno said.
In capturing the invitational's individual title,
Reno didn't need to be spectacular -just steady.
"I was conservative about it," Reno said, "even
if you have to take a bogey instead of shooting
for the pin, or hitting for the middle of the green
making two putts for par."
eno maintained her three-shot lead through-
out final round play Sunday, finishing with a
three-round total of 231. Svenningson took sec-
ond with 234 and Bateman rounded out the top
three with 236.
Baylor, on the strength of Svenningson and
Rat"mann tonk the team title with acnre of 951.

Michigan coach Kathy Teichert said. "There
were a lot of shots around the green that we
didn't capitalize on and to me, that was the key to
our play.
"It's a little bit disappointing for us, because
we thought we could win this event and I thought
it would be a great start to our season," she said.
At first glance, the course conditions appeared
moderate. The sun illuminated the still-green
golf course throughout the morning and most
players bypassed constrictive long sleeves and
pants for polo shirts and shorts.
But players with high thresholds for adjust-
ment were best suited for the final round. The
wind made for great kite-flying, but limited dis-
tance off the tee. What's more, last week's rain
tampered with otherwise predictable lies.
Because of the rain, the greens (normally cut
every day) were left untouched by the golf course
groundscrew during the week - causing a col-
lective headache for greens readers when the
grass was finally trimmed on Friday.
"Our greens were slow during the week and
then they cut them on Friday night and Saturday
morning," captain Amy Talbot said. "That kind
of took away our advantage because a lot of the
girls out there are used to faster greens."
Following Reno for Michigan was Kim Bene-
dict, who came in sixth with a combined score of
240. Bess Bowers was 12th with 245. Misia
Lemanski and Le Anna Wicks both tied for 16th
and recorded 247s.

By Peter Lund
For the Daily
One week away from facing its toughest
competition of the year, the Michigan men's
varsity soccer team took a large step forward
in its ability to win close games in the crucial
waning moments.
Freshman defender Kevin Taylor converted
a penalty kick in the 90th minute yesterday to
raise Michigan to a 1-0 victory over the Uni-
versity of Detroit-Mercy.
The win brings Michigan's record to 3-2 as
it heads into its first Big Ten contest in team
history next Saturday at home against sec-
ond-ranked Penn State.
On the game-winning play, freshman mid-
fielder Mike White was taken down in the
Detroit box, drawing a penalty kick. Detroit
coach Morris Lupenec was very dissatisfied
with the call. As the referees walked off the
field after the game, he sarcastically applaud-
ed them.
"That wasn't a flagrant call, in my view. I
don't think the referee should be dictating the
game on a (penalty) kick," Lupenec said
afterward.
Taylor put the ball in the upper left corner
of the goal. iust out of reach of goalkeeper

"My nerves were going a little crazy," Tay-
lor said. "I always go left, but he went left
early so I had to kick it high."
After Detroit controlled possession of the
ball in the first 10 minutes of the game,
Michigan started to control the game later in
the first half, resulting in numerous chances
for Michigan at the Titans' net. But each
time Michigan threatened, the Detroit Mercy
defense would turn it away or shots would fly
wide, resulting in a scoreless first half.
"In the first half we were getting a lot of
opportunities from our outside midfielders,"
sophomore forward Robert Turpin said. "We
just weren't finishing. We didn't work on our
finishing a lot in practice:'
The second half was much the same for
Michigan, especially after senior forward
Ryan Yoder entered the game for the first
time.
Yoder sparked several more offensive
chances in the second half before leaving late
in the game with an injured calf. Despite all
the opportunities, the Wolverines still could
not score.
"It was frustrating," Michigan coach Steve
Burns said. "We were not finishing as many
opportunities as we were creating. It's part of
the name of soccer. Your expectations are

Michian's Kevin Ronsn braws for the

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