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October 09, 2003 - Image 12

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12A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, October 9, 2003

Hunwick making impact
Freshman defenseman part of Blue's top pairing

Early homecoming for 'M'
foursome in Hoosier state

By Brian Schick
Daily Sports Writer
When Matt Hunwick decided to play for
Michigan, he knew he'd be facing some of the
toughest opponents throughout the season,
such as Minnesota, Boston

College and Michigan State.
But he probably didn't plan
on going up against the top
players on those squads.
So far in this young sea-
son, Hunwick has been a
part of Michigan's top defen-

v oow

sive pairing, lining up with senior captain
Andy Burnes on Saturday night against Mercy-
hurst and alongside alternate captain Brandon
Rogers on Friday night's exhibition against
York. Head coach Red Berenson was confident
his young defenseman was up to the challenge.
"Hunwick has played rock solid from day
one," Berenson said. "I try to find roles that
(freshmen) can be successful with, and we've
given Hunwick a big role. We're not afraid to
play him against the other team's best lines."
Saying that Hunwick has a big role on the
team would be an understatement. His job will
be to shut down opponents' top players on
nearly every shift, a daunting task for even the
most seasoned veteran.
"He had a great game (against Mercyhurst),"
Burnes said. "He didn't even look like a fresh-

man out there. He made me look good at
times."
Both Burnes and Hunwick have learned
from each other so far this season. Since
defense is all about positioning, they both have
to learn to anticipate where each other will be
on the ice. This relationship can only improve
with time.
But Hunwick feels that playing with Burnes
makes that transition period shorter.
"It's been good playing with him and being
his partner so far," Hunwick said. "I'm getting
in the right spot more often and feeling better
out there"
Even more than finding his rhythm on
defense, Hunwick has also had some success
on the opposite end of the ice. Early in the first
period against Mercyhurst, Hunwick was on
the point during the first powerplay of the
game. He received a pass from Eric Werner,
and then found Dwight Helminen, who fired a
shot that would earn Hunwick his first colle-
giate assist.
Hunwick is no stranger to facing tough com-
petition, as he was a member of the U.S.
National Team Development Program last sea-
son, facing top college programs nearly every
weekend. But his first game in Yost was still a
little intimidating.
"It was a little scary, but it wasn't too bad,"
Hunwick said. "Playing with (Burnes and
Rogers) makes you comfortable out there. If

CURTIS HILLER/Daily
Matt Hunwick has been an integral part of the
Wolverines' defense thus far.
you make a mistake, they can cover for you."
But so far, there haven't been too many
instances of Hunwick being out of place.
"He read the ice very well," Burnes said.
"He had a very good effort, and he's going to
be a player to watch."
INJURY UPDATE: Junior Jason Ryznar will
not play in this weekend's series against
Miami due to a bruised shoulder. Ryznar
injured it in Friday's game against York and
sat out on Saturday. Last season, he injured
his shoulder in the season opener against
Niagara and missed three games. In his
return, he injured his other shoulder and
missed an additional four games.

By Brad Johnson
Daily Sports Writer
While Homecoming weekend is still nearly two
weeks away, four members of Michigan's volley-
ball team will be having a reunion of their own
this weekend.
The Wolverines will hit the road to take on
Indiana and Purdue for their first weekend road
trip since Sept. 12. Hailing from Indiana are soph-
omore Ashley Buckingham, junior Jennifer Gan-
dolph and freshmen Megan Bowman and
Danielle Pflum.
"It's going to be exciting," Pflum said of play-
ing so close to home for the first time in her
Michigan career. "I can't wait to play in front of
my home crowd again."
Pflum's entire high school volleyball team is
taking a bus to the Indiana game, which will defi-
nitely give the Wolverines some much needed
crowd support in what is sure to be a hostile envi-
ronment.
Coach Mark Rosen knows the importance of
the upcoming road trip for his four Indiana
natives.
"I think they're excited about it," Rosen said.
"It's always fun to go home and play in front of
family and friends."
Rosen cautioned his players about not getting
overly excited this weekend and instructed them
to simply focus on executing instead.

The coach cited the example of Texas A&M
senior Carol Price, a Fenton native who returned
home to play in front of family and friends earlier
this year at Cliff Keen Arena. Price played poorly
against the Wolverines, likely due to the excite-
ment and nervousness that comes when an athlete
gets a chance to play in front of those he or she
knows.
According to Gandolph, there will be no extra
nervousness on her part this weekend when she
performs in front of her loved ones.
"They either know how I play or they don't;"
she said. "There's not a lot of pressure for me."
Both Gandolph and Pflum entertained the idea
of playing volleyball for the Boilermakers, and
Bowman considered attending Indiana due to the
possibility of increased playing time. However, all
three say they made the right choice in the end.
"Michigan was more appealing to me," Gan-
dolph said. "I wanted to get out of the state and
see some other things."
While this weekend's games will be a golden
opportunity for Michigan's four Hoosier natives to
show what they can do, Rosen is looking at the
trip from another point of view. The coach hopes
his team can recover from a tough five-game loss
to Wisconsin at home last weekend.
"I'm excited to go out on the road," he said. "I
think this is a good test for us this weekend to see
how we can bounce back from last weekend and
go out and improve our standing in the Big Ten."

Buckeyes head to Camp Randall

By Gabe Edelson
For the Daily

Aside from the debacle that will be Northwestern vs. Indi-
ana, this week's Big Ten slate offers some intriguing games.
Will Michigan State continue its surprising start? Can Penn
State reverse its losing trend on the road against a ranked
opponent? Can Ohio State stave off the upset bug for yet
another week? Come late Saturday night, we will have all the

answers, but until then ...
No. 23 MICHIGAN STATE (2-0 BIG TEN,
ILLINOIs (0-2, 1-5) - NooN, ESPN: After
last week's 31-3 blowout victory over Indi-
ana, the Spartans look to stay unbeaten in
Big Ten play when they travel to Cham-
paign to take on the Fighting Illini.
This game features two teams headed in
opposite directions. First-year coach John

5-1 OVERALL) AT

L. Smith has already coached Michigan State to more wins
this season than the team amassed all last year. With a win on
Saturday, the fans in East Lansing will be cheering their team's
best start since the days of Plaxico Burress and Bill Burke.
Illinois, on the other hand, is reeling after its fourth straight
defeat. Quarterback Jon Beutjer has thrown almost as many
interceptions as touchdowns, while receiver Kelvin Hayden has
struggled to fill the void left by Brandon Lloyd's departure.
Michigan State 28, Illinois 20
NORTHWESTERN (0-2, 2-4) AT INDIANA (0-2, 1-5) - 12:10
P.M., ESPN GAME PLAN: A gridiron matchup between the
Wildcats and Hoosiers has rarely excited anybody in recent
years, and this one should be no different.
Wildcats sophomore quarterback Brett Basanez has thrown
seven interceptions while converting just one touchdown pass
this year. The lone bright spot for Northwestern has been run-
ning back Jason Wright, who has rushed for 579 yards and
nine touchdowns to date.
Things have been even worse for Indiana. Quarterback
Matt LoVecchio has put up nice yardage, but those num-
bers have failed to translate into wins (unless a victory
over Indiana State counts). With no major rushing or
receiving threats, the Hoosiers will be hard-pressed to
find their offense.
Indiana 20, Northwestern 17

PENN STATE (0-2, 2-4) AT No. 20 PURDUE (1-0, 4-1) -
3:30 P.M., ABC: Ross-Ade Stadium in West Lafayette will
be the battleground for this contest, which features more sub-
plots than a Guy Ritchie caper. The maligned Nittany Lions
look to defeat a ranked opponent for the first time since last
Oct. 5. The surging Boilermakers, led by coach Joe Tiller,
standout quarterback Kyle Orton and a suffocating rush
defense (ranked second in the nation) will play for a fifth
straight win and a 2-0 conference mark.
The Purdue offense, behind Orton, running back Jerod
Void and receiver John Standeford, has shown signs of bril-
liance this season, rolling up 533 total yards last week in
dominating Illinois.
Freshman quarterback Michael Robinson will make his
second career start for Penn State, looking to build on a nice
performance last week against Wisconsin. But this team is a
mess right now.
Purdue has not defeated Penn State in 52 years. That is
about to change.
Purdue 31, Penn State 17
No. 3 OHIo STATE (1-0, 5-0) at No. 22 WISCONSIN (2-0,
5-1) - 9 P.M., ESPN: The Buckeyes take a nation-best 19-
game winning streak to Camp Randall Stadium in Madison
for this primetime tilt against the Badgers. Ohio State quar-
terback Craig Krenzel, who has not played in more than three
weeks due to a right elbow injury, is expected to play.
Badgers quarterback Jim Sorgi, receiver Lee Evans and the
rushing trio of Anthony Davis, Dwayne Smith and Booker
Stanley will be hungry for revenge after last year's loss to the
Buckeyes.
Ohio State has had a number of close calls this sea-
son, most recently against Bowling Green, when a Will
Allen interception late in the game helped the Buckeyes
escape with the win. Maurice Hall will carry the rock,
while Krenzel will throw to Michael Jenkins, Ben Hart-
sock and Drew Carter. The team's rush defense is
ranked first in the nation and will look to continue its
dominance this week.
This is Ohio State's first road game of the year, and the
crowd of 78,000-plus will be extremely hostile. The Buck-
eyes cannot continue to rely on lucky plays or last-minute
saves. This game will be a true test for both teams.
Wisconsin 17, Ohio State 14

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