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February 21, 2003 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 2003-02-21

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Friday
February 21, 2003
michigandaily.com
sportsdesk@umich.edu

iPORTS

7

Blue hears Lions'

roar

Omaha native ridicules

By Gennaro Filice
Daily Sports Writer
The Bryce Jordan Center featured a matchup
of David vs. Goliath proportions yesterday.
Michigan (2-11 Big Ten, 11-13 overall) held a
seven-game losing streak IGA ®
entering the game, and stood, TENN STATE 75
just one spot away from the
Big Ten cellar. Penn State (12-2, 22-6) boasted
the conference's best mark and arguably its best
player in junior Kelly Mazzante. What better
way for the Wolverines to snap their drought
than to reference the legendary tale?
The Wolverines kept hope alive for the first
10 minutes of the game, but when Penn State
took a double-digit lead into the second half, it
became evident that David had misplaced his
sling and stone for the night.
Michigan fell to No. 12 Penn State 75-61, and
extended its current "W" dearth to eight games.
Although the Wolverines came up short, Michi-
gan coach Sue Guevara was satisfied with the
way her team played.
"We played very hard for 40 minutes," Gue-
vara said. "The effort was there, but the results
just didn't come."
Michigan held a five-point lead 10 minutes
into the game (20-15), but Penn State took
advantage of a Wolverine cold streak and pro-

duced a 15-4 run in six minutes to take the lead.
The Nittany Lions extended their lead to 11 at
the break (37-26) by finishing off the first half
with a 7-0 run.
"(During the late run) they were getting a lot
of transition baskets," Guevara said. "Also they
were penetrating and kicking, and hitting the
open shots."
Penn State coasted through the second half,
never allowing Michigan to get within single
digits.
Mazzante, an All-America candidate, led the
Nittany Lions on both ends of the floor. She had
an impressive game on the offensive side of the
ball, scoring 23 points on 10-of-19 shooting.
But it was her defensive prowess, including four
steals, which caught Guevara's attention.
"(Mazzante) did a great job of anticipating
and getting into the passing lanes," Guevara
said.
Although Michigan's season continues to
crumble, Guevara says her young team is gain-
ing a lot of valuable experience and remains
positive.
"(The team's youthful lineup) is getting
thrown right into the fire, and I think it will real-
ly pay off down the road," said Guevara.
"We are setting goals for each game. We con-
tinue to make little steps, and little steps are the
necessary steps."

Michigande
By Kyle O'Neill
Daily Sports Editor

AP PHOTO
Penn State's Kelly Mazzante drives on Michigan's
Tabitha Pool in yesterday's loss.

Tonight, when Michigan faces Nebraska-
Omaha, the Wolverines will have their
chance to silence all critics with one accom-
plishment: Driving safely in the snow
Because according to Michigan captain
and Omaha-native Jed Ortmeyer, Michi-
ganders don't know the first thing about
how to handle accumulation on the asphalt.
"When it snowed (Monday), all (Ort-
meyer) could talk about is
how here, people don't know
how to drive, but back in ThJS
Omaha people really know % M<''
how to drive in the snow," ebra5
said Bloomfield Hills-resi-
dent John Shouneyia, who
was making sure that the
nearby Ortmeyer could hear
every sarcastic word. "Like
they're so special, so far
beyond anybody. They're about 50 years
behind - like, where is that place?"
That comment prompted a playful spear
tackle into the bleachers and a reporter, and
sparked Ortmeyer's reasoning.
"(Monday) night, the whole car ride, he's
talking about how people in Michigan
don't know how to drive in the snow, but in
Omaha they're such big experts,"
Shouneyia asserted again.
Ortmeyer responded: "But they don't!
Some guy ran a stop sign!"
It is doubtful that the Wolverines will
have time to test their own driving skills -
they still have two hockey games to play on
the weekend - and given the 40-degree
weather in Omaha right now, they won't
even be able to observe other drivers. So
the Ortmeyer-Shouneyia verbal debate will
have to be put on hiatus for a while.
But in the midst of all of Shouneyia's
joking, he did bring up an interesting ques-
tion about Omaha: "Where is that place?"
And for that matter, how did a midwestern
baseball and football state garner such a
strong hockey following?

::....c
<<<; .
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t :
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rs' driving
"If you looked at the tradition of hockey
in Omaha, you'd be surprised," Berenson
said. "They've had hockey for - I don't
know if it is as long as Detroit's, but it's
close. So it's been a grassroots number of
people that played there as pros and settled
there. And one of those people is a guy by
the name of Motto McLean. Motto stayed
there, and he helped kids like Jed Ortmey-
er He helped organize minor hockey, and
he helped generate enthusiasm for rinks."
Omaha has been truly beneficial for
Michigan. Besides Ortmeyer,
who is in his second full sea-
EK~END son as team captain, two play-
s.=<t. ers - Tim Cook and Jason
Dest - from the Omaha-
based River City Lancers will
be freshmen at the University
next year.
While growing up in
Omaha, though, Ortmeyer
played baseball - including a
few travel team tournament games in
Omaha's Rosenblatt Stadium, the home of
the College World Series - and had a legit-
imate shot of playing post-high school ball.
"After I finished high school, I had to
make a tough decision of which sport to try
and go further in," Ortmeyer said. "I
thought my opportunities to play Division I
hockey were better."
With Ortmeyer's college career coming
to a close - including his possible final
appearances playing hockey in Omaha -
the captain has begun to think a little about
what he might do with his life after the
likeliness of pro hockey.
"Who knows? Maybe some high school
team will want a coach in both sports,"
Ortmeyer said. "I think I'd like to get into
coaching hockey more than baseball, but if
the opportunity is there, I might take it."
Jed the Coach is still a long ways away,
and according to Shouneyia, it may not be
his best choice of profession.
"He's a real farmer when it comes down
to it," Shouneyia said. "He's always talking
about his animals."

Big Ten s best tankers descend upon Canham

By Megan Kolodgy
Daily Sports Writer

The 2002-03 season has been good to the
Michigan men's swimming and diving team.
In the beginning, Michigan defeated top ranked
Texas, putting it in the No. I spot for several
weeks. Ten swimmers have at least one NCAA
consideration time, while diver Jason Coben
has an automatic NCAA qualifying score.
Currently, the Wolverines are No. 4 in the
nation and looking toward an event that will
require a greater team effort than any other
meet this year: the Big Ten Championships.
* "This is truly a team championship," Michi-
gan coach Jon Urbanchek said. "The object is
to have all the athletes place in the top 16 so
the michigan daily

1
1
l
l

that they can score." Canham Natatorium, which Urbanchek views
In order to do this, Michigan will have to as a definite plus.
pick up its already rapid pace. "The last time the Big Ten Cham-
"We're very strong at the top pionships were here, we won," he
end, but the swimmers at the tail said. "Hopefully history will repeat
end need to improve so that they NEXT WEEKEND itself."
can score some points," BigTeIIampionships But the Wolverines realize that
Urbanchek said. at Michigan winning the Big Ten championship is
And indeed, the Wolverines will Dys: Feb.27-March1 a tall order. Urbanchek estimates that
have to be in top condition if they The: Noon each day they will need a huge score of 700
hope to defeat Big Ten rival Min- Cainham Naatorium ; points to win the meet.
nesota. The Golden Gophers have "The entire Big Ten has improved
won the Big Ten Championship a lot, especially Northwestern and

the last two years, but Urbanchek hopes that a
home-pool advantage and a stellar season will
help propel the Wolverines to victory. This
year's competition will be held at Michigan's

Wisconsin," Urbanchek said. "And on paper,
Minnesota is the favorite to win."
Fueled by the pressure to perform, hearty
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