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November 15, 2000 - Image 11

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2000-11-15

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The Michigan Daily - Wednesday, November 15, 2000 - 11

Who's on first? Line-

By Arun Qopal
Daily Sports Writer
As the Yost Ice Arena crowd
stands and cheers en masse, the pub-
lic address announcer bellows, "And
for Michigan, starting at left wing
Whose name fills in the blank?
For some teams, the line combina-
tions never vary - fans can expect
to see the same trio of players on
each line, game in and game out.
For Michigan fans, this is not one
of those teams. In the first 10 games
of this season, the Wolverines have
shuffled their lines like a blackjack
dealer in Atlantic City.
There have been some mitigating
circumstances - injuries and sus-
pensions, for example -- but the
fact remains that for players like
Scott Matzka and Mark Kosick, the
question of "Which line is it, any-
way?" is a constant concern.
"Playing with the same guys gets
stale once in a while," Matzka said.
"Me, Langfeld and Hilbert had a
real good start, but they thought we
needed to make a switch, and we did
Perhaps the biggest key to form-
ing an effective line combination is
chemistry between the three line
What makes this difficult is that
chemistry isn't always something
that can be developed - players and
coaches can usually tell whether or
not a particular line is going to be
"it takes a while," Michigan coach

Red Berenson said. "With some of
these players, it's their fourth year,
but they're different players now.
"Scott Matzka came here as a cen-
terman, but he's played some right
wing, and now he's really playing
well on left wing with Shouneyia.
and Mink, whom he's never played
with before."
It's entirely natural for a player to
want a fixed set of linemates -
keeping a line constant for an entire
season allows the various members
of the line to learn each others'
strengths and weaknesses and devel-
op a good rapport.
But, with the amount of firepower
that Berenson has stockpiled here in
Ann Arbor, it's not surprising that
Michigan has a lot of line switches.
"I think if you put anybody on this
team together, the line has a chance
to be successful," Kosick said. "It's
just whether that line's clicking on
that particular night. We've got a lot
of talented guys on this team, and I
think everyone can work well
The line-switching this season
isn't a new phenomenon. Kosick is
in his fourth year playing for
Berenson, and he's seen this sort of
thing before.
"As long as I've been here, he's
always tended to change lines quite
frequently," Kosick said. "It's
worked well. We've won a lot of
games here, so I don't think any-
body's really going to question it.
Everyone's just going to go out there
and work as hard as they can in the
position they're playing in."

Hoosiers win.
without Knight
was a much different atmosphere
inside Assembly Hall last night.
Gone were Bob Knight and the red
sweater. Instead, it was new coach
Mike Davis in a suit and tie.
A new era of Indiana basketball
began with an 80-68 victory over
Pepperdine in the opening round of
the Preseason NIT.
But there was a very different aUra
surrounding this game, Indiana's
first without Knight as head coach
in 29 years.
"It's different, everybody that's
here I'm sure loved Coach
(Knight)," said Todd Lindeman, a
former player. "It's a different feel-
ing, but I'm here to watch the play-
A little more than two months
after Knight, the fifth-winningest
coach in Division I history and the
man who led the Hoosiers to three
national championships, was fired
for violating the university's "zero-
tolerance" policy, Indiana started
And the Hoosiers unveiled a more
up-tempo style.
The result was five turnovers in Its
first seven possessions, but Indiana
recovered and beat Pepperdino at its
own game, leading 40-36 and then
using an 11-0 run midway through
the second half to build a 67-51 lead
and pull away.
Kirk Haston led the Hoosiers by
matching his career-high with 28
But Knight and his legacy were
far from forgotten last night.

Michigan's Mark Kosick recently entered Michigan's top 50 scoring list.
The senior now has 123 points, including 48 goals.




Oesterle not too late
to grab starting role

By Benm0 in Singer
Daily Sports Writer
Michigan's exhibition against the
Houston Jaguars on Monday was
symbolic for Heather Oesterle's per-
formance last year.
The first half, she couldn't score.
The second half, she came to life.
The junior moved from a backup
role to a starting position for this
season. She proved her ability by
doubling her offensive production
during the postseason last year.
Oesterle earned herself the chance
to start after working hard in the off-
season to. improve her conditioning
and stamina. She sealed the starting
job in the frontcourt with two solid
performances in Michigan's presea-
son games.
"We've always known that Heather
can pass the ball," Guevara said. But
people didn't "see that she could
No one saw that until March of
2000. In two Big Ten Tournament
games and the first-round NCAA
loss to Stanford, Oesterle scored
eight points per game, as opposed to
the four she contributed during the
regular season.
"I think she's playing with a lot
more confidence," Guevara said.
In just 22 minutes against The
Family, Inc., Michigan's first exhibi-
tion, Oesterle hit for 10 points and
Continued from Page 10
will likely set a few fan records this
weekend. First, the conferenice needs
just two sellouts to break the record of
35 for a season.
The Big Ten also has averaged 68,856
fans, about 1,000 more than the all-time
fttendance record set in 1984.
To the victor...
,go the spoils of war, The other
eague rivalries taking place this
weekenld have so~mmjor hardwae
on the~ line,
laws at Mlnwaotp Floyd of Rosedale
(sculpted pig)
Indiana at Put**: Old Oaken Bucket
('I' or 'P' link added to bucket)
MichIgan Slate at Penn Shits: Land
Grant Trophy

added three assists. In the first half
against the Jaguars, it appeared she
would come up well short of a repeat
performance. But then, similar to her
2000 postseason showing, she had an
offensive outburst.
"I was thinking, 'Somebody has to
step up,"' Oesterle said. "I wanted to
go out and prove I could play."
Remnants of her 0-for-3 first-half
shooting performance were forgot-
ten. After having nothing to show for
her efforts but two free throws, she
turned her opportunities into points.
Gesterle went from having an unpro-
ductive day to playing a productive
role in the victory within a matter of
The motivation for her turnaround
could have come from a lead that at
times felt too tight. Or it could have
been to get a little separation from
her coach.
"I think she was tired of me get-
ting in her face," Guevara said.
She was 5-for-6 from the field in
the second half. The final score of
the game came off her steal as she
went coast to coast for the layup to
give her 13 on the day.
Oesterle earned her chance from
Guevara. Now she has to continue to
make the best of it.
"She's got a starting position right
now," Guevara said. "I know that's a
role thiat she relishes and she's going
to work her tail off to keep it."



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