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November 20, 2003 - Image 11

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The Michigan Daily, 2003-11-20

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The Michigan Daily - Thursday, November 20, 2003 - 11A

Big Ten champions
move onto NCAAs

McCullough hoping
to kick ankle sprain

By Anne Ulble
Daily Sports Writer
You're standing on the line wait-
ing for the start. Hundreds of other
runners are staring down the course
planning out how they are going to
maneuver themselves ahead of the
pack. You take a deep breath, and
then the gun goes off.
"There are millions of things
going on in my mind before the
start," senior Jessie Allen-Young
said. "But right before the gun goes
off I just think, 'OK, I've done the
work, now it's time to race.'"
This Monday the Michigan
women's cross country team will
compete at the NCAA Champi-
onships in Waterloo, Iowa. The Big
Ten champion Wolverines hope to
make a top-five finish at the meet.
Michigan already raced on the
course earlier this season at Pre-
Nationals and placed fourth.
"Being familiar with the course is
extremely important for our racing,"
senior captain Andrea Parker said.
"I think it will be a great advantage
for us, especially at this meet."
Although snow is tentatively pre-
dicted for Monday's race, senior
Lindsey Gallo still thinks that the
course is going work well for the
"We ran well there last time,"
Gallo said. "So I think we all have a
,pretty confident outlook going into
this meet."

The race will consist of 225 com-
petitors from 31 teams that had to
qualify last weekend at their respec-
tive NCAA regionals. The top two
teams from each region became eli-
gible to compete along with the top
four individuals not on the teams
that qualified.
The Wolverines earned their bid to
"dance" by finishing second at the
Great Lakes regional meet last week-
end. Sophomore Rebecca Walter and
Allen-Young led the team by placing
third and fourth, respectively.
"I was pretty happy with how I
ran," Allen-Young said. "But this
Monday is what counts the most."
Putting in between 60 to 70 miles
a week during the height of the sea-
son, the team now has the chance to
put all their training to the test.
"I think, at this point, we've done
all the work we can do," Parker said.
"We've been trained to peak for this
meet, so I think we're as ready as
we are going to be."
The team meets the night before
every race to talk over race plans
and strategies. Coach Mike
McGuire tells team members that
they've done their homework, and
the race is like a test they have to
do well on.
"Coach McGuire gets us fired up
before the race," Parker said. "When
he gets excited, there's just some-
thing in his voice that gets you real-
ly pumped up to run faster."
Gallo also admits that her team-

Senior Jessie Allen-Young is an integral part of the 2003 Big Ten Champion Wolverines.
Michigan's next test comes Monday at the NCAA Championships in Waterloo, Iowa.

mates help her get fired up while
everyone is at the starting line.
Before the race, the girls do a cheer
to get everyone hyped.
"It's a great experience being able
to compete against the fastest run-
ners in the country," Gallo said.
"But then again, I'm lucky enough
to get to do it everyday with the

girls on my team."
This year's top contenders for the
team championship title will be
Stanford and reigning champion
Brigham Young. If Michigan man-
ages to have a top-five team finish,
it will be the first time since 1994,
when the team was runner-up at the
NCAA Championships.

By Julie Master
Daily Sports Writer
Less than sixth months ago, jun-
ior Amy McCullough of the Michi-
gan women's swimming team was
dominating the competition at the
World University Games in Korea.
Currently, she is nursing a lower
ankle sprain injury that has left her
competing at less than full strength.
Upon entering her apartment six
weeks ago, McCullough fell down
the stairs and sprained her ankle.
"I didn't think it was that bad,"
McCullough said. "It happened at
night, and I thought I rolled my
ankle so I iced it, went to bed, woke
up the next morning and it was
Since the fall, McCullough sat the
bench for two weeks and watched
her team compete. In practice, she
has only been able to work her
upper body, as kicking is too hard
on the tendons.
"A lot of people say you don't use
your ankle in swimming, but you
actually have to use a lot of ankle
fluxion, and it has to be relaxed in
order to compete," McCullough
Last week against Ohio State,
McCullough was back in action
competing in the 100- and 200-yard
freestyle, earning a fifth-place and
fourth-place finish, respectively.
"Even though I didn't swim very
fast at Ohio State, being able to
swim made everything seem better,"
McCullough said.
All the wear and tear on her upper
Continued from Page 5A
he's been waiting for a long time.
"He's a difference-maker on their
defense, but I feel like I'm a differ-
ence-maker on our offense," Pape
said. "He's more aggressive than last
season - he doesn't give up on
plays. I'm going to have to play .the
best game of my life."
But even if Pape can neutralize
Smith, the Buckeyes will use a vari-
ety of looks to try and confuse the
Wolverines as much as possible and
force them out of their game plan of
running the ball.
Carr joked that the Wolverines
would have to empty the backfield
and throw on every down. But he
knows Perry is well aware of the
challenge ahead and is willing to do

body has triggered a previous shoul-
der injury to reappear. Now, not
only does McCullough have to face
one injury, but she has to deal with
the pain of lingering tendonitis as
"It's really hard," McCullough
said. "Most of us swimmers have
been training since we were nine or
ten years old, and the body takes a
lot of wear. When you have to push
your body as hard as you can,
there's a lot of injury involved."
Despite the injuries, McCullough
is trying to keep a positive attitude.
She has had to do a lot of training
on her own, but it has allowed her to
stay focused and get through it.
"She's run into a physical obsta-
cle," head coach Jim Richardson
said. "But I think it's been a good
opportunity for her to work on the
psychological side of things."
After achieving a sixth-place fin-
ish in the 400-yard freestyle at the
World University Games in Korea
and earning a NCAA All-America
Honorable Mention last year, it's no
surprise that her injuries have set
her back a couple steps.
"Right now, I'm definitely way
behind where I would have been had
I not been injured," McCullough
said. "But, hopefully, I'll be able to
get through it, race hard second
semester and still be able to swim
fast. It shouldn't set me back in the
long run, I hope."
Today, McCullough will travel
with the team to Chapel Hill, N.C.,
to compete in the 100-, 200- and
500-yard freestyle at the Nike Cup.
anything he can to win.
As much as Perry wants to be a
major contributor to this game, get-
ting the win is, and has always been,
more important to him than his indi-
vidual contributions.
"You're defined by whether you
win or not," Perry said. "Nobody
cares if you have 200 yards and
But the truth of the matter is that
the Wolverines roll with Perry. In
Michigan's two losses, Perry com-
bined for 126 rushing yards - four
yards less than his current per-game
So what does Michigan do if its
running game is cold?
"That's the fun of the game, trying
to find out a way to win and a way to
offensively have some success," Carr

No. 5 Michigan running for national title

By Phil Kofahi
Daily Sports Writer
The No. 5 Michigan men's cross
country team will be running in one
the biggest races in its history when it
travels to Waterloo, Iowa, for the
NCAA Championships, which take
place Monday.
The forecast for Waterloo is a high
of 38 degrees with scattered snow
showers. It's great weather - if
you're a runner.
When asked about running in their
last cross country race at the Univer-
sity, the Michigan seniors seemed as
if the thought of running their last
race in fall hadn't crept in yet, not
with what's about to come. Their
entire career will culminate in a 10-
kilometer race, alongside the best
runners in the nation. The top 31
teams in nation, along with 38 addi-
tional individual qualifiers, will lace

up to prove they're the nation's best.
Michigan coach Ron Warhurst puts it
simply to his team, to keep it relaxed
and ready.
"It's not the Olympic trials, but its
halfway there," Warhurst said.
Stanford is the hands-down favorite
to win the national title after it won
the West Regional with a record 18
points, placing five of the top six run-
ners in the meet. You can flip a coin to
predict who the next five teams will
be. Michigan will be competing with
Wisconsin, Colorado, Iona College,
Northern Arizona and Arkansas in the
fight for a top-five finish. Dathan
Ritzenhein, the 2001 Freshman of the
Year from Colorado, is the favorite to
win the individual title. Ritzenhein, a
Rockford native, is undefeated on the
Warhurst knows what many on the
team and around the country know:
this team is capable of great things.

During the season, Michigan has been
running down Wisconsin, and it is
looking to pass. At the Big Ten Cham-
pionships, the Wolverines finished 17
points behind the Badgers. Last Sat-
urday, the margin was cut to four
points in the Great Lakes Regional
Fifth-year senior captain Nick
Stanko feels that things are in place
for them to do what they want.
"We just all need to be confident in
the race," Stanko said. "Ronnie
(Warhurst) has gotten us just ready to
this point, all we can do is be confi-
Warhurst is keeping his squad
ready for one of the biggest races in
the school's history. He knows that
the team that is mentally toughest will
come out on top. He'll be taking his
top seven to the starting line, with the
top five scored in the team standings.
"We need five guys to hit, to have

career days," Warhurst said. "These
seniors have the chance to finish
higher than any other team here ever.
The way they ran at regionals, it's
very attainable."
Senior Tom Greenless knows that
it's very simple.
"Just make the experience pay off,"
Greenless said.


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