10A - The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 20, 2003
'M' soccer earns first-
round bye in NCAAs
Senior-led Blue eyes
second national title
By Ellen McGarrity
Daily Sports Writer
Silence. A collective scream. And
then a mob of people rushing into
the hall to make urgent phone calls.
Anyone standing in the hallway
outside Crisler Arena's media room
late Monday afternoon would have
thought a murder had just taken
To some on the Michigan men's
soccer team, the event that tran-
spired may have actually felt like a
life and death situation.
The team had gathered to watch
the NCAA selection show to find
out if Michigan would be awarded
its first-ever chance at a tournament
As ESPN began showing the tour-
nament brackets, a stillness came
over the room. Faces ranged from
anxious to tranquil as each player
squinted to find Michigan's name
on the screen. And then there it was.
But the name was in a different
spot than expected. Instead of being
in the first round, the team had
earned the 12th-seed position,
meaning Michigan would have a
"I was quite surprised," said
Michigan coach Steve Burns. "The
possibly of getting that first-round
bye never crossed our minds."
Burns and the team consider
themselves lucky to have even
earned a spot in the tournament.
Last Thursday in the first round of
the Big Ten Tournament, No. 2 seed
Michigan lost to No. 7 seed North-
western. The Wildcats' 2-1 victory
over the Wolverines was their first
win over a Big Ten team in four
years. Michigan worried that the
loss might lead to a repeat of last
year's NCAA selection - a year
ago Michigan was overlooked even
after making it to the Big Ten
Now that the team has been
selected, some players reflected on
last week's loss in a positive light.
"I think we're going to stay
focused, because our loss on Thurs-
day really put us in place," senior
forward Mike White said. "I think
that we know that we can lose.
We've said all year, 'Any team can
lose to any other team on any given
White is one of nine seniors that
have been with the program since its
start four years ago.
"We don't want to stop here,
especially as seniors," said White.
"Every team that we've lost to,
every team that we've seen play,
we've said, 'We can beat them.' We
Michigan senior Mike White breaks away from Northwestern defensemen. White
will be counted upon to score in the absence of Michigan star Knox Cameron.
really have a lot of confidence in
With its first-round bye, Michi-
gan will now face the winner of the
Brown-St. Peter's game next
Wednesday in Ann Arbor. But one
key Wolverine will be missing on
Junior midfielder Knox Cameron,
who holds the Michigan record for
career and season goals, will be
playing with the U.S. Under-20
national team in the FIFA World
Youth Championships in the United
"In soccer, because goals are so
difficult to score, you rely upon
more of the team to win games,"
said Burns. "Certainly we'll miss
Knox, but now greater emphasis
will be placed on Mike White, who
will step in for him at the target
forward position. Kevin Robinson
and Trai Blanks will also see more
Cameron also is not worried
about his team.
"I was gone last year the last four
regular season games and the Big
Ten Tournament, and we ended up
making it to the finals," Cameron
said. "We're a great team, and obvi-
ously, I've had a good year, but I
know they can pull through."
By Waldemar Centeno
Daily Sports Writer
Excited about the two tight victo-
ries in East Lansing this past week-
end, the Wolverines (5-1 Big Ten,
17-6 overall) celebrated as four play-
ers received All-Region honors for
their outstanding play during the
Senior tri-captains April Fronzoni,
Kristi Gannon and Stephanie John-
son were all named to the 16-member
STX/NFHCA Division I All-West
Region first-team on Monday. Junior
Adrienne Hortillosa also earned a
spot on the All-West Region second-
"It's good. It shows how good our
team is," Johnson said. "A lot of the
individual awards that we get reflect
how our team plays. If we didn't have
the rest of our team, we wouldn't be
getting any of those accolades."
Fronzoni has received All-West
Region first-team honors all four
years at Michigan. The Big Ten
Offensive Player of the Year is the
first player in school history to do
The All-West Region first-team
award is Gannon's third selection.
The Big Ten Athlete of the Year is the
third player in Michigan history to
receive such an accolade.
The honor is Johnson's second
straight selection to the first-team
and Hortillosa's first selection to the
"I think the whole team is really
stepping up and playing well," Michi-
gan coach Marcia Pankratz said. "It
really does take an 'A' game from
everybody to get in and win the
finals. This past weekend, Stephanie
Johnson had a very stellar game as
usual. Kristi was our field general in
the middle, and April finishing and
scoring goals. But, with that trio
commanding most of the attention,
there are other players that are really
stepping up their games and making
With the stage set for the Final
Four weekend, the Wolverines
remember their national champi-
onship run in 2001.
"We're definitely a very supersti-
Continued from Page 9A
difficult opponents: No. 2 Lehigh and
No. 18 Central Michigan. Don't be
fooled by Central Michigan's lower
ranking, though; the Chippewas defeat-
ed an injury-ridden Michigan squad last
Central Michigan's Ty Morgan looks to
tious team," Fronzoni said. "There
are actually a lot of things that are
lining up to the way it lined up when
we won it in 2001. So I think that
the way this team flows, it is actual-
ly helping us to stay mentally
As they did in their championship
year of 2001, this year the Wolver-
ines beat the same two opponents en
route to the Final Four. Michigan
defeated the Tar Heels and the Spar-
tans on both occasions.
The Wolverines beat the Tar Heels
1-0 in the first round of this year's
tournament. Michigan faced the
Spartans next, and behind a contro-
versial goal, due to high sticking, the
Wolverines beat the Spartans 2-1 en
route to a spot in the Final Four.
"We are coming off of a really
good strong weekend obviously,"
Fronzoni said. "The win against State
is actually going to propel us. We are
ready and prepared for Wake."
Michigan is coming off of two
hard-fought victories against No. 4
seed North Carolina (2-2 ACC, 16-6)
and No. 5 seed Michigan State (5-1,
17-5) to gain momentum for this
"I think we are obviously excited,"
coach Marcia Pankratz said. "It's
something that the players have
worked extraordinarily hard for. We
are just looking forward to competing
and winning a championship."
The Wolverines will enter
Amherst, Mass. Friday as one of the
four surviving clubs in the 16-team
"It will be a wonderful Final Four,"
Pankratz said. "All four teams are
really strong. It's probably the
strongest field I've every seen in the
final four, so hopefully we will be at
the top of our game and playing the
best hockey we can and capitalizing
on our chances."
The Wolverines' semifinal
matchup is against the top team in
the nation, Wake Forest (4-0 ACC,
18-1). Michigan lost its first game
with the Demon Deacons earlier in
the year, 4-2, and the Wolverines
hope that their third trip to the Final
Four in the past five years will end
like it did in 2001.
dethrone Bertin as well. This is not the fast
time these two have matched up. Morgan
defeated Bertin in the Ohio state high
They will meet again for the first
time since that match this weekend
And Morgan better be prepared.
"These guys better be ready to wres-
tle Bertin for 7 minutes," McFarland
Saturday s home finale marks end of an era
By Brad Johnson
Daily Sports Writer
Saturday, when the lights are turned
off at Cliff Keen Arena for the last time
this season, three Michigan volleyball
players will have to say goodbye to the
place they have called home for the last
"I'm really trying not to think about
it," senior Erin Moore said. "I've been
here a while with (Nicole Poquette),
and it's going to be hard, and it's going
to be emotional, but I'm going to try
and not think about it until after the
game. Minnesota is a tough team, and
we really need to pull out a win against
The match on Saturday night against
the Golden Gophers will be the final
home contest for Moore, Poquette and
senior Chantel Reedus. This group of
seniors is a very special one for coach
Mark Rosen because of the history they
"I think the one thing that will always
make this class very special is that
they're our first class," Rosen said.
"This is the group that came in with
(me and Leisa when we took the job).
(The seniors) made the choice to come
here really trusting the fact that we were
going to take this program to higher
levels. I can never be appreciative
enough of the fact that they took that
opportunity or that risk to come in and
make our program better."
This group of seniors has done just
that. Moore is Michigan's career leader
in kills, and currently ranks among the
top six Big Ten players in three different
statistical categories this season. All of
these factors make her a top candidate
for Big Ten Player of the Year.
Meanwhile, Poquette is the Wolver-
ines' all-time leader in hitting percent-
age and Reedus has recorded 10 or
more kills in four matches this year
despite recovering from an injury that
sidelined her for most of the season.
The mark that these three seniors will
leave on the Michigan volleyball pro-
gram is undeniable.
"They're great kids," Rosen said of
the seniors. "They are people that are
fun to be around, and I respect them as
much if not more as people than I do as
players. We hope that we can continue
to recruit players who are of that moral
fiber, because it's a great foundation to
Asked what she will miss the most
about being a Wolverine, Moore refer-
ences the atmosphere at Cliff Keen.
"The support we get here from the
students and the band -just the whole
atmosphere. It's personally my favorite
gym in the whole Big Ten," Moore said.
The team's marathon warm-up ses-
sions are what Moore will be glad to
"We definitely warm up longer than
any team in the Big Ten," she said,
laughing. "I am definitely OK with not
doing that for very much longer."
For Poquette, the dynamic compan-
ionship that the volleyball team pro-
vides each season will be the largest
vacancy that is left once her playing
days as a Wolverine are over.
"It's so weird how even if just one per-
son (graduates), each team is totally dif-
ferent," Poquette said. "I like being able
to play with different people every year."
Although Moore and Poquette dis-
agree on what they will remember most
fondly once they leave Ann Arbor once
and for all, they agree on one thing:
winning on Senior Night against No. 22
Minnesota (12-4 Big Ten, 19-9 overall)
will be the perfect way for them to go
out as Wolverines.
With four matches remaining, a win
against Iowa (1-15, 6-20) on Friday and
the Golden Gophers would give Michi-
gan (9-7, 17-10) a much-needed confi-
dence boost heading into the NCAA
Tournament, which begins in two weeks.
"If we win out in the Big Ten, I think
that puts us in an awesome position just
as far as the Big Ten goes," Moore said.
"With the tournament coming up, it's
my last one, and I'd like to go out on a
.:5:3' ::;: k'r
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Sunday, December 14, 2003
Doors open at 1:15
Ceremony begins at;
and lasts about two h
As an engineer in
, : .
, : r::
s no telling what
you'll work on.
(Seriously, we can't tell you.)
Summer Term 2003 and Fall Term 2003 graduates and candidates
are eligible to participate in Winter Commencement.
Tickets will be distributed Monday, December 8 through Thursday,
December 11 between 8:30 a.m.and 4:30 p.m. in the Pond Room
of the Michigan Union. Graduates and candidates are eligible to
receive up to six (6) tickets during this time. Additional tickets will?
be distributed on Friday, December 12 from 8:30 a.m.to noon in
the Pond Room of the Michigan Union.
ademic Attire (Cap & Gown)7
United States Air Force applied technology is years ahead
of what you'll touch in the private sector, and as a new
engineer you'll likely be involved at the ground level of new
and sometimes classified developments. You'll begin leading
and managing within this highly respected group from day
one. Find out what's waiting behind the scenes for you in
the Air Force today. To request more information, call
1-800-423-USAF or Log on to airforce.com.
Michigan Book & Supply, Michigan Union Bookstore and Ulrich's
Bookstore all carry Bachelor's attire. Both Michigan Book & Supply
and the Michigan Union Bookstore carry Master's attire, while
Doctoral attire is only available from the Michigan Union Bookstore.