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October 01, 2003 - Image 7

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2003-10-01

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

October 1, 2003

PeaRTiSgat Biv


Blue freezes
out Oakland
By Ellen McGarrity
Daily Sports Writer
ROCHESTER - The Michigan men's soccer
team might as well have been playing in the mid-
die of Chicago's Michigan Avenue. Oakland's field
certainly felt like the Windy city yesterday when
the Wolverines took on the M____GAN ___
Grizzlies. But the chilly fall
weather and gushing winds
didn't stop the Wolverines' attack.
Michigan triumphed 1-0 over No. 17 Oakland,
winning its third game ever against a ranked
"These are the kinds of wins we need to make a
name for ourselves," senior defender Kevin Taylor
said. "We're the University of Michigan, but since
we're young, we don't really get that respect."
The Wolverines opened up the game with an
impressive first half, keeping possession of the
ball and creating many scoring chances. Junior
Mychal Turpin, who has had two four-goal games
this season, netted the only goal of the game in
the 15th minute of play. After junior Dawson
Stellberger passed Turpin the ball, the forward
outran two Oakland players and kicked the ball
past the Grizzlies' goalkeeper.
Michigan's goal in the first half marked just the
second time this season the Wolverines have
scored before the half.
Shortly after Turpin's goal, Michigan received a
gift from its opponent. An Oakland player was
given a red card after intentionally trying to injure
Turpin, forcing the Grizzlies to play a man down
for the remainder of the game.
"It's tough playing a man up, believe it or not,
because the psychology favors the team with a man
down because they've got nothing to lose," Michi-
gan coach Steve Burns said. "The team that's a
man up really starts to feel the pressure of, 'Hey,
we're a man up, we should be playing better.' "
But the Wolverines kept their heads level, as the
undermanned Oakland squad proved to be no
match for Michigan goalkeeper Peter Dzubay. The
Grizzlies managed just nine shots on goal all
game, seven fewer than the Wolverines.

Ilitch's Tigers and Wings

remain polat
Goin' to work
Let me tell you the story of two
professional team owners. The
first has continually opened his
pocketbook. Every time a player has
been injured, left via free agency or has-
n't panned out, he's been replaced by a
better specimen.
The result has been one of the most
dominant franchises in sports. This par-
ticular owner has been rewarded with
three championships in less than a
decade; he continued to spend money
this offseason in hopes of making it four.
Owner No. 2 has proven himself to
be the exact opposite.
Rarely spending money to improve
his team, it has been forced to pick up
cheap, unwanted players.
When he has spent money, it has
been ill-timed and poorly placed, throw-
ing money at average athletes when bet-
ter ones are available for slightly more
His prize has been a team that has
floundered for a decade at the bottom of
the league's barrel, unable to ever
improve over the prior season.
Now for the kicker.
These two owners are actually one
Specifically, it is Mike Ilitch, the cur-
rent owner of both the Detroit Red
Wings and Detroit Tigers.
I don't even really need to say any-
thing more - anyone who knows any-
thing about sports is aware of the

difference in success recently between
the Red Wings and Tigers.
The problem is, and has been for
years, the completely different strategies
that Ilitch has utilized with his two
In hockey, Ilitch has assembled one
of the most impressive lineups in hock-
ey history. Future Hall of Famers Brett
Hull, Brendan Shanahan, Brett Hull and
Dominik Hasek have all made their way
to Detroit in recent years.
When Hasek retired after the Red
Wings' 2002 Stanley Cup champi-
onship, Ilitch slapped $8 million a year
in front of Curtis Joseph, the best free
agent goalie available.
In the playoffs last year, the Red
Wings struggled on defense. The
answer? A multi-million dollar contract
for superstar blueliner Derian Hatcher.
It's just another move in a long line of
decisions to keep the Wings stockpiled
with the best talent available.
That attitude couldn't be further from
what has happened at Tiger
Stadium/Comerica Park since Ilitch
took over the Tigers in the '90s.
While the Red Wings continue to
accept handouts from Ilitch, the Tigers
have stumbled through year after year
with washed-up talent. Detroit hasn't
seen a winning baseball team since
1993, and last week, the Tigers had to
get hot in order to avoid breaking the
record for most losses in a season.
The biggest misconception about this
entire Dr. Jekyl and Mr. Hyde situation
is that Ilitch has never spent money on
the Tigers. On the contrary, he put up a
large sum of money to help build Com-
erica Park, and then he tried to slap a
$100-million contract on slugger Juan
Gonzalez after the Tigers traded for
But Gonzalez didn't sign, and the
See BURKE, Page 8

Defensive mldflelder Dawson Stellberger adds to Michigan's strong attack against Oakland yesterday.

"Playing a man down, they had to drop one of
their forwards back into the midfield, so they
kind of sacrificed a goal-scorer for a midfield-
er." Taylor said.
Burns also prepped for this game by pairing
junior Matt Niemeyer and Stellberger as his
defensive midfielders. Burns didn't have this lux-
ury last season. Niemeyer redshirted with a torn
"One of the keys to beating this team, because
they play the same shape as us (4-3-3), was to
win the central midfield," Burns said. "We didn't
want to be outworked. We wanted Niemeyer in
there next to Dawson to give us that work rate

and that tenacity defensively. With those two
players on the field, it allowed our defensive
backs to attack a lot more."
Burns continues to draw from his deep bench.
The coach played freshman Kevin Savitskie for
much of the game in the defensive back position
next to Taylor.
"I love having (Savitskie) next to me because
he's such a fighter - he never quits," Taylor said.
Michigan may have conquered this in-state rival
for now, but the real challenge lies ahead. Michi-
gan faces rival Indiana, a team the Wolverines
have yet to beat in four tries, at home Sunday on
the Varsity Soccer field.

Ritt readies for 20th season

Backup netminders
ready for the worst

By Jamie Josephson
For the Daily
With a veteran head coach in her 20th season at
Michigan, the welcoming of a new assistant coach,
three returning seniors and three freshmen recruits,
the Michigan women's tennis team seems to be
brewing a recipe for suc cess.-
Michigan coach Bitsy Ritt
explained that it hadn't even dawned T s 1S V
on her that this milestone year had Michigar
arrived. Wolverre
"(Coaching at Michigan) been a Tine:
great process that I have enjoyed
immensely," she said.
Matching experience with origi-
nality, the coaching tandem of Ritt
and newcomer Katy Propstra sets the stage for the
2003-04 season.
Previously an assistant coach for the men and
women at Northern Arizona (2001-03), Propstra
was also a two-time NCAA All-American for Ari-
zona State (1995-99).
"Having an assistant with her playing creden-
tials and coaching experience will make a signifi-
cant contribution," Ritt said. "She knows what it
The squad's obvious excitement for the newest
addition to the coaching staff has made Propstra
feel right at home
"I'm really excited about being here at Michi-
gan," Propstra said. "There is a lot of potential on
this team."
The Wolverines are looking to improve on their
5-5 Big Ten and 14-10 overall record from last
year. Their season came to an end after losing in
the second round of the NCAA Regional to No. 1
seed Stanford.
The Wolverines will count on junior and two-
time All-Big Ten honoree Michelle DaCosta for
on-court success. Coming off a record of 18-15 (8-
3 Big Ten) from last season, DaCosta has already
made an impressive showing, finishing in the
semifinals of the 2003 ITA National Summer


Championships. The ITA currently ranks her No.
67 in singles, and her doubles tandem with junior
Leanne Rutherford fills the No. 50 slot.
"I'm pretty excited about beingranked," DaCos-
ta said. "I just want to try to maintain it and hope-
fully improve upon it."
Pitt also explained that leadership from seniors
- Chrissie Nolan, Kim Plaushines, and
Kavitha Tipirneni will all play key
EKEND roles in acclimating the freshman
stthe newcomers.
ltational "I think the freshmen coming in
hrgh have the greatest work ethic," Tipir-
; neni said. "All of us are on the same
page right from the beginning. I
believe we are a bit more experienced
this year even with the three new
Lindsey Goldstein from Highland Park, Ill., is
one of the newest additions to Michigan tennis.
She explained her excitement in transitioning from
high-school tennis:
"It's more intense. It's Big Ten. Enough said."
Michigan hopes to repeat last season's dominat-
ing performance in the Wolverine Invitational. In
2002, the women posted a record of 16-7 for sin-
gles and won nine out of 11 doubles matches.
"The Wolverine is a good tournament that pre-
pares us for our winter season and dual-match sea-
son," Plaushines said.
Leading this veteran/freshman mix into the Invi-
tational is Ritt, adding nearly 20 years of experi-
ence. In her 19 years thus far at Michigan, she has
been named Coach of the Year in 1994 and 1997.
Ritt led the 1981-82 team to a 27-8 overall record,
taking the eighth position on the school's all-time
single-season win list; she even lead the 1997
squad to a Big Ten championship.
Nevertheless, Ritt doesn't evaluate her coaching
success solely on these athletic performances.
"It's not just about the tennis," Ritt said. "It's the
fun that we've had, the relationships we've devel-
oped and the past players I keep in touch with ... I
would not leave to coach any place else."

Michigan's backup goalies better
have made the most of the 40 minutes

By Sharad Mattu
Daily Sports Writer

they each played in last
Friday's Blue/White
intrasquad exhibition.
Because if this sea-
son is anything like
the last, the duo of
sophomore Noah

t 8oog

Ruden and freshman Mike Meyhew
will hardly see any time on the ice this
Sophomore Al Montoya started all
43 games in net last year, while Ruden
appeared for less than 60 minutes
"Being a backup goalie is a tough
role," Michigan coach Red Berenson
said. "I've seen it where they don't get
a lot of opportunities to play in a game.
And I've seen it where our number-one
goalie gets injured, and then suddenly
they've got to be our starting goalie for
half a year. You never know"
Berenson is referring to the 1999-
2000 season, when all three Michigan
goaltenders saw significant action.
That season, Kevin O'Malley and L.J.
Scarpace played well in starter Josh
Blackburn's absence, and Michigan
managed to win the CCHA title.
"If there's an injury or something
unexpected happens, they need to be
ready," Berenson said. "For example, if
we lose Montoya for the World Juniors
at Christmas time, who's going to play
in the (Great Lakes Invitational)?

Who's going to start in the champi-
onship game against Michigan State in
front of 18,000 people? Who's ready to
take that and run with it?
"We're in September now, but those
are the things that are down the road."
Ruden understands his role as the
backup, and realizes how vital it is.
"It's more difficult I think to get pre-
pared the right way when you're the
backup," Ruden said. "All week Mike
and I get in our work, but then it's not
easy to be ready during a game if Al
gets hurt, God forbid.
"We work hard to show the coaches
we're getting better. The coaches pay
attention to us and see how hard we
work and how prepared we are in case
anything happens."
Wolverines perform up to preseason
expectations, then fans can expect
them to overcome their stumbling
block the past three years: the Frozen
Four semifinal.
Michigan is ranked No. 2 in both the
USA Today/American Hockey Maga-
zine and U.S. College Hockey Online
Two-time defending champion Min-
nesota, which eliminated the Wolver-
ines in the Frozen Four the past two
seasons, is ranked No. 1 in both polls.
Three other CCHA teams - Ferris
State, Michigan State and Ohio State
- appear in both polls.
Berenson is glad Michigan is ranked
so high, but noted, "We expect to be
one of the best teams. That's our goal,
and now we need to prove that."

Michigan senior Kavitha Tipirneni will be a key factor in
getting the Wolverines' three freshmen ready to play.

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