The Michigan Daily - Tuesday, November 18, 2003 - 9
Powerla no longer Blue's 'salvation'
By Gennaro Filice
Daily Sports Writer
COLUMBUS - "Our powerplay has been our
salvation. That's the best part of our offense, maybe
the only part of our offense, and that's where it all
Michigan coach Red Berenson on Nov. 8fol-
lowing a weekend series in which the Wolverines'
converted 6-of-14 powerplay opportunities against
Entering last weekend, Michigan had scored at
least one powerplay goal in each of the season's
10 games. The Wolverines had notched almost as
many goals with the man advantage (19) as they
had at even strength (20). With 12 powerplay tal-
lies in conference play, Michigan stood head,
shoulders, waist, legs and feet above the rest of
the CCHA on the man advantage, as the only
team with a double-digit powerplay sum (Miami
and Michigan State were tied for second with
nine each), prompting Berenson's praise after the
Ferris State series.
But when the Wolverines traveled south to
Columbus for a two-game series, their vaunted pow-
erplay headed an inauspiciously similar direction. A
stingy Ohio State penalty kill - ranked first in the
CCHA - silenced Michigan's celebrated unit.
"You've got to hand it to their penalty killers,"
Berenson said. "They blocked shots, they pressured
the puck - they were well-coached, well-prepared
and they shut us down. We didn't handle it well."
Although Michigan split the series, its power-
play looked dismal both days. Going 0-for-8 on
the weekend, the Wolverines could muster just 10
shots on goal, and few were quality attempts.
Michigan lacked its usual fluidity with the extra
man and had trouble keeping the puck in the
"We got rattled," Berenson said. "We made
some poor passes, we gave the puck away, we
missed our shot. We had a couple of chances, and
we weren't sharp."
Forward Jeff Tambellini - Michigan's leading
goal scorer with nine - usually sits at the point
and plays a big part in the Wolverine powerplay.
But, the sophomore proved ineffective, logging just
three shots in his third career weekend series with-
came at the end of the second period on Saturday.
Holding a 3-1 lead, the Buckeyes were assessed with
a couple penalties that placed them in a precarious
position: Dave Barton received a two-minute minor
for holding the stick with 5:17 left in the period, and
20 seconds later, Chris Olsgard was slapped with a
five-minute major for hitting from behind. But Ohio
State escaped Michigan's initial 5-on-3 advantage
unscathed and managed to shut down the Wolver-
ines. The Buckeyes even scored a shorthanded goal
in the remaining three minutes of 5-on-4 play.
"We looked like we'd never passed the puck out
there," junior alternate captain Eric Nystrom said.
"We had a great chance on the five-minute power-
play. I think we might have got one or two shots on
that, and that's hats off to their penalty kill also."
"That was a huge inspiration for the rest of the
game," Ohio State forward Scott May said. "It was
a good chance for them to get back in the game."
Ohio State coach John Markell credited his play-
ers' exceptional hockey sense for the Buckeyes'
penalty kill success.
Sophomore Jeff Tambellini is tied for the team lead with three powerplay goals, but Ohio
State denied him any significant chances with the man advantage this weekend.
out a goal or assist.
Ohio State's biggest
could be ac
penalty kill of the weekend
Rubin bows out in tourney final
Daily Sports Writer
Speed vs. power. Consistent vs. risky.
Reserved vs. animated.
Yesterday's finals of the Big Ten sin-
gles championship featured two players
that were extreme opposites. Michigan's
quiet junior, Michael Rubin, played
well, but could not convert when it
counted, as he fell to Minnesota's power-
ful senior, Chris Wettengel, 6-4,6-4.
"Michael had his chances today,"
Michigan assistant coach Dan Goldberg
said. "It could have gone either way, and
it easily could have been 6-3, 6-4 in
Michael's favor. Basically, it came down
to a couple of tough points."
Wettengel, who had something to say
after every point, broke Rubin in the
first game of the finals with a series of
hard and deep baseline ground strokes,
and Rubin couldn't recover. Both play-
ers held serve for the rest of the set. In
the second set, Rubin went up a break in
the second game, but was immediately
broken again, and he couldn't hold serve
in his last service.
"I think I had more chances to break
him than he did me," Rubin said. "But
he converted one more per set than I
could. I think if I played my best, I could
have easily won that match. I thought I
competed well. But you're left with dis-
appointment when you get to the finals
and play well and can't win."
Head coach Mark Mees was proud of
Rubin's performance, not only in the
finals, but also in the whole tournament.
He was particularly pleased with
Rubin's ability to get his first serve in.
"It was a really good tournament for
Michael," Mees said. "To run through
and win five matches and to play some
good tennis in the final is really good.
He had opportunities. There were a lot
of games where he had leads and let a
few free points go. Wettengel is solid
from the ground, and he isn't going to
give you a whole lot."
Earlier in the day, Rubin rolled
through his semifinal match over Penn
State's Roddy Cantey, 6-1, 6-1. He got a
lead early and never looked back.
"It definitely helped to get out to an
early lead," Rubin said. "A lot of guys
playing against the one seed feel like
they can swing away because they have
nothing to lose. When you let guys get
out in front, they gain confidence."
In that match, Rubin used a combi-
nation of strong serves and powerful
ground strokes to move past Cantey
into the finals. He had nine aces,
including five in the final game, and no
"Start to finish, Michael played a
very controlled match," coach Goldberg
said about the semifinal match. "He
made few mistakes and played at a high
Mees said that the whole team will
walk away from this tournament on a
positive note. The Wolverines had four
players in the round of 16, two in the
quarterfinals, and, of course, Rubin in
the finals. Overall, Mees felt it was a
good way to end the fall season and
Michael Rubin couldn't overcome Chris
Wettengel, losing 6-4, 6-4 in the final.
begin to prepare for the spring.
"We have nine really motivated guys
on this team, and we are going to have
some good competition for the spots in
the spring," Mees said. "We'll be a com-
petitive team. Expect us to play well."
Continued from Page 8
close to the Horseshoe, Bowman says
he actually loved watching Notre
Dame rather than the Buckeyes, but
when the Michigan/Ohio State game
came around, he would root for Ohio
But when the recruitment letter
came from Ann Arbor, Bowman had
no trouble switching allegiance to the
team he grew up disliking.
Even players who grew up in Michi-
gan felt the heat of the rivalry from the
Ohio State end. Center Dave Pearson
grew up in Brighton, but his parents
Continued from Page 8
Newsies after Michigan's win).
It's cleaning Michigan Stadium to
its fullest and resetting tents and 70-
pound weights that each got thrown
around by the wind like rag dolls.
It's the insanity that my bosses at
Crisler and the Big House will be
going through this entire week.
It's the pointless answers that
coaches and players will give in order
to stay away from bulletin board
It's seeing Drew Henson sitting two
sections to the right of you in 2001
instead of being on the field. It's get-
ting your picture taken with him and
wishing him the best. It's defending
row A of the student section from
over-zealous Ohio State fans who
won't stay in their own section. It's
watching you and your friends nearly
drop the gloves with those fans.
about reading and reacting," Markell
work hard at it, and we knew that it
were big Ohio State fans. He said he
started cheering for Michigan just to
be different from his parents.
INJURY UPDATE: Lloyd Carr said yes-
terday that sophomore defensive back
Jacob Stewart, who was injured against
Illinois, will not be available this week-
end, but should be ready to play in the
bowl game that Michigan participates
in. Carr also said that Marlin Jackson
felt very good after coming back
against Northwestern and should be
ready to play a much larger role this
BCS BAFFLER: In today's BCS stand-
ings, Ohio State moved into the No. 2
spot, while Michigan fell to No. 9.
It's Chris Perry ... and Chris Perry.
It's a belief that while some will
scoff at you and say it is just a mean-
ingless game, you can look at them
and just smile.
Even after your team loses -
whether wearing scarlet and gray or a
winged helmet -it's hard to stay
mad when there is so much beauty in
the rivalry. Sometimes I feel like I'm
seeing it all at once, and it's too much.
My heart fills up like a balloon that's
about to burst. And then I remember
to relax. And then it flows through me
like rain, and I feel nothing but grati-
tude for every stinking moment of this
stupid little game.
- Kyle O'Neill did not get that Evans
Scholarship and would have rather
pulled out his own teeth than miss watch-
ing the first half of that 1999 game like
he did. He can be reached at
Men's soccer team ready
to dance for the first time
The Michigan men's soccer team got a sweet sur-
prise yesterday afternoon when it learned it had
received the 12th seed in the NCAA Tournament.
After a stunning 2-1 loss in the first round of the
Big Ten Tournament last week to Northwestern,
there was some question as to whether the team
would even get an at-large bid.
As the 12th seed, Michigan receives a first-round
bye and will face the winner of the St. Peter's-Brown
game next Wednesday at the Michigan Soccer Field.
The team will be without star forward Knox Cameron.
This will be the first time Michigan plays in the
NCAA Tournament in the program's four-year history.
- Ellen McGarrity
'Blue Out' returns to the
Big House this weekend
This weekend's football game with Ohio State has
been declared a 'Blue Out,' and all fans are encour-
aged to wear blue.
Blue Out T-shirts will be available for purchase
tomorrow through Friday for $10 on Central Campus.
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Venue: Hale Auditorium, Assembly Hall
Resume Drop: 12/31/03 (Investment Banking)
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BBA1s, Sophomores and Freshmen strongly encouraged to attend,
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j. Casual attire - Refreshments will be provided
t S~ A