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March 10, 2003 - Image 9

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The Michigan Daily, 2003-03-10

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c ke 9UCictr Haag
SPORTS DAY

March 10, 2003

SECTIONB

111101 ONE 11111 111111111 J m 11 11111111

Punished by the

Deane

'M' can't contain Purdue
guard in Senior Day loss

Blue rallies to

top rival Indiana
By Ellen McGwdty
Daily Sports Writer
The horn indicating the end of the second overtime quar-
ter had sounded, and Michigan water polo coach Matt
Anderson kicked his water bottle into the pool, skipping,
and threw his hands up in the air. This colorful display of
emotion wasn't out of anger, though, NDIANA u
it was his way of celebrating his
team's eleventh win against arch-
rival Indiana, bringing the team's record against the
Hoosiers to 11-0-1.
"It's where you wish you could be in the pool to get rid
of some of the energy" said Anderson of his victory dance.
"And I don't like doing that, but I gotta thank God my heart
held out, and at that point I needed to release some energy."
Anderson had many reasons to rejoice over his Wolver-
ines' 9-7 win over the Hoosiers - their closest game ever
with the rival. Coming into the game, the team knew it
would have to regroup and learn how to play without
starters Megan Hausmann and Jo Antonsen, as well as
driver Abbi Rowe. All were lost to injury during the team's
last two road trips to California.
"We're a team that doesn't depend on any one particular
person every single game," junior Julie Nisbet said. "Dif-
ferent people have different strengths - different people
step up. I don't think we ever get worried when we lose
players."
See HOOSIERS, Page 6B
Wrestling falters
at Big Ten11 meet.
By SharxdMattu
Dafly Sports Writer
MADISON - The Big Ten Conference knows
wrestling. Of the 11 schools in the Big Ten, six are ranked
among the top 10 and nine are among the top 25. So when
they all meet up for the Big Ten Championships, just about
anything can happen.
This weekend, the Michigan wrestling team finished
sixth with 90.5 points. But with eight wrestlers qualifying
for nationals and all but one wrestler finishing at or better
than their seeding, the Wolverines leave pleased with their
performance and excited to make noise at the NCAA
Championships. Minnesota held off Iowa for the title.
The lone Wolverine to reach the finals, A.J. Grant,
found himself up against Purdue's Chris Fleeger, who he
has lost to in all four of their meetings. Fleeger went to
work immediately, registering a takedown in the first
minute. From there he didn't let up, and within a minute
Fleeger put him on his back for the pin.
"That match obviously didn't go the way A.J. wanted,"
Michigan coach Joe McFarland said. "You've got to give
Fleeger some credit - he's real tough. The good thing is
that you can erase this whole tournament and NCAA's are
a whole new ballgame."
See BIG TENS, Page 6B

By Chris Burke
Daily Sports Editor
So that's why Willie Deane's nick-
name is "The Scoring Machine."
The Purdue senior torched Michigan
for 36 points, including 14-of-16 from
the free throw line, 10E.;
and the Boilermak-
ers (10-6 Big Ten,
18-9 overall) took a giant step toward
the NCAA Tournament with a 69-61
win on Saturday to spoil the Wolver-
ines' Senior Day.
Perhaps still lingering in the emotion
of a pregame ceremony honoring
departing seniors LaVell Blanchard,
Gavin Groninger and Rotolu Adebiyi,
the Wolverines were flat out of the
gate.
After a crowd-pleasing dunk by
freshman Graham Brown gave Michi-
gan an early 6-5 lead, the Wolverines
(10-6, 17-12) scored just nine points in
the next 11 minutes. Deane posted 14
in that span, as Purdue opened up a
lead as large as 27-13.
"It's tough," Groninger said. "Purdue
came in ready to play - I'm not so
sure that we were.
"You obviously never want to lose
your Senior Night game because it's a
game you never forget."
The game played out as almost an
exact inverse of Michigan's 78-67 vic-
tory at Purdue on Feb. 19, when the
Wolverines jumped out quickly and the
Boilermakers could never get over the
hump in a comeback attempt.
"Certainly the start that they were
able to get out to was reminiscent of
how were were able to play them in
West Lafayette," Michigan coach
Tommy Amaker said.
As much of a problem as Deane

posed to the Wolverines' defense, the.
Michigan offense was just as lackluster
for much of the game. The Wolverines
shot just 38.9 percent from the field for
the game and were frequently forced
into bad shots or turnovers. Michigan
coughed the ball up 15 times during the
game, 13 of which came from freshman
Daniel Horton and junior Bernard
Robinson.
Horton finished with 15 points -
five of which came at the game's finish
'with the outcome all but decided -
after scoring 31 in the previous meet-
ing.
The Boilermakers' success also came
despite second-leading scorer Kenneth
Lowe's absence due to a separated
shoulder.
"I think we underestimated (Michi-
gan in the first game), and I think
Michigan underestimated us today,"
Purdue coach Gene Keady said. "We
talked that without Kenneth Lowe,
Willie was going to be the guy who was
going to win it for us."
See BOILERMAKERS, Page 5B
STEALING THE SHOW
Michigan's Daniel Horton carried the
Wolverines to a 78-67 win at Purdue on
Feb. 19. Saturday, the Boilermakers'
Willie Deane returned the favor. Here's
how the two have matched-up in Michi-
gan and Purdue's two matchups this year.
Horton Deane
31 POINTS ON FEB. 19 22
15 POINTS ON SATURDAY 31
5.5 ASSISTS PER GAME 1.0
2.0 REBOUNDS PER GAME 6.0

Tired legs, lack of depth catching up to Wolverines

NAWEED SIKORA
Blowin' smoke
Sometimes people can't see things
they don't want to see. Michigan's
players and coaches gave every-
thing they could possibly give this sea-
son. During their midseason run of 13
consecutive wins, they showed more
emotion, heart and commitment to win-
ning than anyone could have expected
from a team banned from the postseason.

But playing at that level for that long is
draining for anybody. And as much as
Daniel Horton, Lester Abram, LaVell
Blanchard and Bernard Robinson
amazed fans with fantastic shots and
gutsy clutch plays, those four could only
do so much..
The depth was not there, and during
the Big Ten grind, it's tough to get by
without a deep bench.
Nobody wanted to see Michigan's lack
of depth catch up with them this season,
and many even pointed to the Wolver-
ines' win away at Purdue as a sign that
this team was still fresh and poised to
win the Big Ten Championship.
But the reality is that this team has
been running out of juice. It began dur-
ing its first game at Illinois, in which
Michigan led by double digits with just

over 10 minutes to play in the game, but
collapsed down the stretch and couldn't
come back. They didn't do the little
things down the stretch that made the
difference in the first half of the confer-
ence season.
In yesterday's loss to the Boilermakers,
Purdue senior Willie Deane shot and
missed a crucial free throw with the
Wolverines trailing by six and 4:23
remaining. Earlier in the season, the
Wolverines would have snagged the ball
off the boards and come back to the
offensive end to get back in the game.
But yesterday, Deane sneaked into the
lane, stole the rebound from Michigan's
big men and passed it around to name
Buscher, who made it an eight-point
deficit with a jumper.
When Deane retrieved the ball, Michi-

gan coach Tommy Amaker kicked the
scorer's table in frustration.
It was a single play, but it said a lot
about how the Wolverines were feeling
Saturday. Although they wouldn't admit
it, it was clear in their demeanor on the
court that this season has caught up to
them physically.
"They opt-toughed us today," Lester
Abram said. "Every time we made a little
run, they would make a big play, and we
couldn't get back into the game."
"We just weren't as tough as we should
have been today," Michigan's Graham
Brown said.
But these are not common words from
the Wolverines this season. Amaker and
the Wolverines have established them-
selves as the team that always works
See SIKORA, Page 5B

Icers salvage tie after
giving up two-goal lead

Miserable season ends
at Boilermakers' hands

By Bob Hunt
Daily Sports Writer

COLUMBUS - It had all the
makings of a Saturday night disaster
for the Michigan hockey team. After
the Wolverines surrendered a two-
goal lead to bring the game into
overtime, Hobey
Baker Award
candidate and OHIO STATE
Ohio State center R.J. Umberger
had exactly what he wanted. The
junior received a pass right in front
of the net as time was running out, a
situation he practices every Thurs-
day before a game that he said he
scores seven out of 10 times.
But Saturday's shot was one of
the three he didn't.
Umberger moved to his left on
Michigan goaltender Al Montoya,
but the freshman made a save with
his right pad to salvage a 3-3 tie.
With the second tie between the
two teams on consecutive nights,
the Wolverines (18-7-3 CCHA, 24-
9-3 overall) finished the season in
second place in the CCHA, six

postseason run with a best-of-three
CCHA first round playoff series
against Bowling Green next week-
end at Yost Ice Arena.
Throughout the second period
Saturday, it looked as if the Wolver-
ines were going to carry momentum
into the series with Bowling Green
by building a 3-1 lead. As Michigan
was finishing off its' second consec-
utive penalty kill, David Moss inter-
cepted a pass, took the puck the
length of the ice and put it inside
the right post, giving the Wolverines
the lead. A minute and a half later,
on the powerplay, Brandon Kale-
niecki came down the right side and
put a rebound just under the diving
Ohio State goaltender Mike Betz.
But the Buckeye coaching staff
learned during the second intermis-
sion that they needed at least a tie to
be the third seed in the CCHA Tour-
nament. Despite being swept by the
Buckeyes, Michigan State had
defeated Western Michigan, and the
Spartans held the tiebreaker for hav-
ing more league wins.
"We knew that Michigan State

By Gennaro FIlice
Daily Sports Writer

RYAN WEINER/Daily
Brandon Kaleniecki battles for possesion of the puck against the Buckeye's Eric
Skaug in Friday's 3-3 tie. The freshman scored the game-tying goal in the game.

INDIANAPOLIS - When asked to
name the difference between her
team's blowout win on Thursday and
the season-ending
loss on Friday,
Michigan forward
Jennifer Smith gave a very simple, but
precise answer.
"We didn't put the ball in the hole
tonight."
Just 24 hours after blowing out No.
6 seed Illinois 83-59 in the first round
of the Big Ten Tournament, the 11th-
seeded Wolverines (3-13 Big Ten, 14-
17 overall) saw their season come to an
abrupt close in a 72-50 loss to No. 3
seed Purdue (12-4, 25-5). As evi-
denced by Smith's straightforward
quote, it didn't take a rocket scientist to
figure out what went wrong for the
Maize and Blue.
"We scored 83 points yesterday and
struggled to score 50 points tonight,"
Michigan coach Sue Guevara said.
"It's what has haunted us all season.
We have been inconsistent from one

percent from the field, and at one point
in the second half, went 6:33 without
converting a field goal.
"Purdue played good defense,"
Smith said. "They sagged in the low
post. They did a nice job defensively."
The Michigan front line flourished
in Thursday's win, utilizing a low
post-oriented high-low attack. But on
Friday, the Boilermakers overcrowd-
ed the paint, and interrupted Michi-
gan's offensive flow. Although Smith
led the Wolverines with 15 points,
Michigan's other post players were
ineffective, scoring a meager seven
points combined.
"They really packed it in," said
Smith. "They had at least two players
defending the low post every time."
In order to unclog the heavily
defended post, the Michigan guards
had to hit a few outside shots, and
force the Purdue defense to extend.
Unfortunately, the Wolverine back-
court never found a rhythm, going 5-
for-19 from the field.
Defensively, Michigan could not
stop Purdue's well-rounded offense.
From the perimeter,'Boilermaker guard

going into the playoffs," Markell
said.
Ohio State then dominated the
third period, creating the vast
majority of the scoring chances and
outshooting Michigan 13-7. The
Value City Arena season-high crowd
of 13,628 got back into the contest
when forward Paul Caponigri skated
down the goalline and beat Montoya
to his left, cutting the lead in half.
It looked like the Buckeyes had
tied the contest when a pass from

drove the Buckeye fans into a fren-
zy, and Montoya into a tirade about
how the puck went off Umberger's
skate. After discussion, the officials
called off the goal.
"It hit my foot, and I didn't even
realize it," Umberger said. "There
was no way I could have directed it
in. It's just frustrating."
But Michigan's lead didn't last
much longer, as an Umberger slap-
shot deflected right in front of for-
ward Daymen Bencharski, who

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