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March 18, 2002 - Image 9

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2002-03-18

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

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Icers finally conquer State

By J. Brady McCollough
Daily Sports Writer
DETROIT - The CCHA regular season
title was nice, but the Michigan hockey
team still hadn't accomplished the one
thing that could legitimize its entire sea-
son - beating Michigan State.
Last night, with the CCHA Tournament
Championship on the line, the Wolverines
finally put it all
together against MCHGANSTATE 2
the Spartans, beat-
ing their arch-rival MICHIGAN 3
3-2 to sweep the
CCHA regular season and tournament
Wtitles.
"I can't tell you it was any special strat-
egy," Michigan coach Red Berenson said.
"It was just a lot of character, hard work,
leadership, poise and all the things that
you need to have a winning team."
Entering last night's contest, Michigan
was 0-4-2 (0-1-2 this season) against

Michigan State since its 4-3 overtime vic-
tory on Jan. 27 of last season. In the
teams' three previous meetings this sea-
son, the Wolverines felt that they had out-
played the Spartans, but were unable to
score the key goals to take control and rat-
tle Michigan State's All-CCHA goaltender
Ryan Miller.
"The things I've seen written about us
against State, I think they're true," Michi-
gan assistant coach Billy Powers said.
"The record is crappy against them in the
last six games. (Beating Michigan State) is
something that we needed to do as a team
to get over the hump.
"We haven't played hopeless against
them, but they've had an edge. Tonight we
had a mental and physical edge. It was
nice to find that."
Leading Michigan State 3-2 with less
than a minute to play, the Wolverines near-
ly gave away their championship. Michi-
gan defenseman Mike Komisarek had
control of the puck in the Wolverines'

zone with Miller out of the Spartans' net.
Instead of lofting the puck or trying to
score an empty-net goal, the sophomore
iced the puck, giving Michigan State a 6-
on-5 faceoff in the Michigan zone.
With less than 20 seconds left in regula-
tion, a scramble for the puck ensued in
front of Michigan goaltender Josh Black-
burn. The puck squirted away toward the
senior, who did not cover up the puck but
swatted it straight ahead - right to a
Michigan State player.
In the last 10 seconds, it was every man
for himself, as the Spartans and Wolver-
ines fought for possession of the puck, and
more importantly, pride. Blackburn cov-
ered the puck as the buzzer sounded, and
the Wolverines - overcome with relief -
rushed the ice as champions.
"It was nuts," Michigan forward Milan
Gajic said. "There were people and bodies
flying everywhere. I honestly believe some
would have given up their left leg to stop a
See SPARTANS, Page 5B

Captain
or1tmeyer
answers
Blue'as call
By Naweed Sikora
Daily Sports Writer
DETROIT - After yesterday's
game, Michigan coach Red Beren-
son sat next to his .captain Jed Ort-
meyer with a small grin.
Berenson never thought twice
about naming him captain in the
beginning of the season. Even
though Ortmeyer was only a junior,
Berenson knew he had chosen a
player whom he could always count
on in key situations.
Ortmeyer's two-goal performance
yesterday only reassured his coach's
belief.
Ortmeyer, Cammalleri and Black-
burn "are players that can make a
difference in a big game," Berenson
said. "They had their chance this
weekend, and I think they did that."
With just over nine minutes
passed in the second, and the score
knotted at one, Ortmeyer stepped up
to the right circle in the Michigan
State zone preparing to take the
faceoff. As the puck dropped,
Michigan's captain sent it back to
Cammalleri and then bolted for the
net. Cammalleri fired a shot on
Michigan State goalie Ryan Miller,
who left a rebound out front. Ort-
meyer was there to clean it up and
give Michigan the 2-1 lead.
"Ortmeyer is Ortmeyer," Michi-
gan freshman Milan Gajic said.
"He's there every game for us. He's
never taken a game off, and he's the
epitome of what we want out there."
The Wolverines' 2-1 lead did not
hold up, as a fluke goal by Michi-
gan State later in the second tied it
up. But in the third, Ortmeyer once
again was able to give his team a
lift.
Less than five minutes into the
third period, with Michigan on the
powerplay, freshman Eric Nystrom
received the puck in the corner. He
wheeled around and spotted Ortmeyer
See CAPTAIN, Page 463

AP PHOTO
Texas' James Thomas and Chris Ogden celebrate after they
beat No. 3 seed Mississippi State In Dallas yesterday.
Undera ch ivers
dominate earl
s the dust settles on the first week of tournament
action, the Big Dance has separated the contenders
om the pretenders. Some of the remaining "con-
tenders" got lucky (Connecticut), others got an easy draw
(Arizona), and a couple advance simply by winning two
home games (Illinois, Texas and Pittsburgh).
It's kind of strange
to see the Sweet Six- ( ?
teen without Michigan
State or Gonzaga,
while random teams
like Oregon (they have
a basketball team
there?) take their
place.
But Cincinnati still
choked and Duke
advanced, so every-
thing appears to be
normal in college basketball.
Those who believe that there is a conspiracy favoring Duke
found more ammo on Saturday when CBS took some liber-
ties with the scoreboard, at one point showing the score as
Duke 321, Notre Dame 61. Perhaps the giant blood stair on
Mike Dunleavy's arse was worth 250 points.
On the other hand, the network's tech boy could just be a
complete idiot. In the game between UCLA and Cincinnati
yesterday, a 3-pointer by UCLA somehow resulted in a two-
point deduction for the Bruins and a six-point addition for the
Bearcats.
Despite the best efforts of ESPN (which gave "A Season
on the Brink" more hype than anything in the entire history
of hype), Bobby Knight's band of overachievers at Texas
Tech could not live up to the unrealistic expectations of its
many bandwagon fans.
Indeed, this was a weekend that belonged to the under-
achievers. No. 12 seed Missouri and No. 8 seed UCLA -
two top-five teams earlier in the season - will meet in the
West Regionals this week. Dan Gadzuric and Kareem Rush
suddenly found a way to flip the switch back on after their
teams self-destructed in conference play and dropped out of
the polls.
Missouri had little trouble with the nearly talentless Buck-
eyes in round two, which, when combined with Wisconsin's
See DANCE, Page 66

What was more special? Winning the Mason Cup or beating Michigan State, a team led by the trophy's namesake?

'Different' Navarre

By Charles Paradis
Daily Sports Writer
Spring practices began for the Michigan
football team over the weekend, and one of
the questions everyone is curious about is
who will be the starting quarterback when
Michigan kicks off its season in a few
months?
On January 1, Michigan lost its first
bowl game in four years. After the blowout
loss to Tennessee in the Citrus Bowl, the
quarterback position
came under scrutiny. FOOTBALL
Junior quarterback
John Navarre led Notebook
Michigan to an 8-4
record last season with 19 touchdowns and
13 interceptions on the year. But Navarre
will have some competition with spring
practice over the next few weeks.
"We go in with the idea that we are
going to compete," Carr said. "It doesn't
matter where your mind is based on what
you think is going to happen. The key is
what you do on the field on a daily
basis."
This spring is a chance for Navarre to
show the coaches how much he has
Sirnn- -f imnornved _ in the

offseason. Navarre has dr
and, according to the coach
40-yard dash time is fastert
posted by Brian Griese an
when they played at Mich
has also worked with the
back's coach Scott Loef
improve the technical aspect
"A part of what you try to
and what you hope your pla
the calm of an offseason is
self objectively," Carr said."
ier to look at yourself criti
you have more time and yo
stress of the season and you
to study yourself. I thinkc
(Navarre) the first thing ye
that he looks a lot differen
extremely hard in the offseas
One up-and-coming play
vie for some snaps is Spe
The transfer from San Dieg
year off from college footb
Mormon mission and is jus
ing acclimated to the Michig
"I think he feels more con
what we are doing and is m
terms of the terminologys
things, like checks at thel
mage that must h edone nric

fighting for job
opped weight Carr said. "I think he is ready to compete."
hing staff, his CENTER STAGE: Prior to the beginning of
than the times last season, defensive lineman Dave
d Tom Brady Petruziello moved over to the offensive
igan. Navarre line because of the loss of four offensive
new quarter- lineman to the NFL.
ffler to help This spring, Carr is moving Dave Pear-
of his game. son, another defensive lineman, over to
do as a coach offensive line because of the depth at
yers will do in defensive line and Pearson's hard-nosed
look at your- style and attitude.
"It's much eas- "I felt from the day that he got here that
ically because (Pearson) was a good football player. I
u're not in the think that he has developed physically now
have a chance and sizewise," Carr said. "We have very
when you see good depth in the defensive line and I
ou'll notice is think that Dave brings a temperament to
nt. He worked the offensive line that I think we need and
son." that I think will help us offensively."
er who could Pearson will compete with fellow junior
ncer Brinton. Courtney Morgan and Andy Christopfe
o State took a for the starting center position.
all while on a ON THE SIDELINES: Last Friday, Carr offi-
t now becom- cially announced all of the major coaching
an system. staff changes that have taken place this
mfortable with offseason. With Terry Malone talking over
lore assured in as offensive coordinator, Andy Moeller ,
and the little son of former Michigan coach Gary
line of scrim- Moeller, will assume interior line respon-
r to the snaw" sibilities.

This weekend, the Michigan football team hit the practice field for the first time In 200;. After a
disappointing performance In the Citrus Bowl, the Wolverines are anxious to start anew.

I

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