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April 07, 2004 - Image 9

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 2004-04-07

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Wednesday
April 7, 2004
sports.michigandaity.com
sports@michigandaily.com

SPORTS

9

M' plays the
best, loses to
Team USA
By Brad Johnson
Daily Sports Writer
In four months, the U.S. Olympic water polo team
will compete in the 2004 Summer Olympics in Greece.
But last night, the team came to Ann Arbor for a little
appetizer.
The women's U.S. National team stormed into Ann
Arbor last night and defeated the Wolverines 14-3. The
game kicked off the team's seven-city college tour in
preparation for the 2004 Olympic games.
"I don't care about the score;' Michigan coach Matt
Anderson said. "I care about what we were able to do
against the 13 best players in the world, and that's what
it comes down to."
Team USA, which is currently No. 1 in the world
and the odds-on favorite to win the gold medal in
Athens, had a variety of chances early against the
Wolverines. But it failed to capitalize due to poor
shooting out of the gates. Michigan hung tough
throughout the first period, and was able to hold Team
USA to a 1-0 lead after the first seven minutes.
"I knew we were going to be able to match up in the
first period, but eventually they are bigger and faster
and stronger, so they are going to wear you out,"
Anderson said.
Team USA exploded after the first period and scored
13 of the game's next 16 goals to put a stranglehold on
the Wolverines.
Though the score was lopsided, junior goalkeeper
Betsey Armstrong was a bright spot for Michigan. She
made several strong saves to keep the game from get-
ting completely out of hand.
"Betsey is a great goalie," said Guy Baker, Team
USA's coach. "She did a good job ... Sometimes we
just got some open looks. It had nothing to do with
Betsey or anything like that, but it was a good test for
us just as far as how well we are shooting."
Freshman Shana Welch also played well for Michi-
gan, scoring the team's first goal - much to the delight
of the large crowd on hand at Canham Natatorium.
Overall, the Wolverines looked at the game as a pos-
itive learning experience heading into their postseason.
"(The game) was incredible," senior Julie Nisbet
said. "It's hard to explain. These girls - they're the
best in the world right now, they won (the World
Championship) - so if you can just learn something
every single possession, every single time you're

Weber, Iverson go head-to-
headfor title of 'The Realest'

vs.

JIM WEBER
The Champion

ALLEN IVERSON
The Challenger

'm not sure what made me sicker:
the Arby's I just ate for dinner, or
hearing Allen Iverson came out
with a shoe that has "The Realest"
printed across its sole.
The Arby's sent me to the bath-
room three times in five minutes;
Iverson challenged my throne. I
claimed this title in early February
with my first column: "Jim Weber
should not be confused with a realist:
one with realistic expectations. He is

The Realest: the most real. "
With great power comes great
responsibility. And being "The
Realest" means accepting anyone's
challenge. If that challenger is a
five-time NBA All Star and former
League MVP, so be it. With the ball
in my court, I selected a wide variety
of categories to settle the challenge
(being The Realest also has many
privileges).
To the comparison chart:

Category: Hardest headshot

Weber

Iverson

Edge

See above

See above

Iverson

Senior Julie Nisbet, who has been part of the team since its inception, will end her home career in two weeks.

guarding someone, you're learning and you're getting
better. It was just an incredible experience."
Even Michigan's opponent looked at the game as a
learning experience.
"I think that colleges are going to match up against
different players on our team and try to give us differ-
ent looks that we wouldn't get against ourselves,"
attacker Brenda Villa said. "Because right now, all we
are doing is scrimmaging against ourselves. We know
each other pretty well, so it makes us think, and it
makes us become more aware in the water."
Despite the fact that it was able to handle the
Wolverines with ease, Team USA had nothing but posi-
tive things to say about Michigan's program and its
growth throughout its four short years of existence.
"From four years ago when it first started, the level
of play would be average at best, and now they are
competing with the top teams in the country," Baker
said. "Michigan having a strong team is very important
for us nationally. One of (the National team's) goals is
to help develop the sport nationally and (make water
polo) not just be a California sport or a (regional) sport.
When (Michigan starts) beating some of the top teams,
and some of the top recruits start coming here and
there's interest in things, then I think we'll truly be

developing as a sport. They play an important role in
the future of our sport."
Villa was also extremely impressed with the
improvement that she has seen at Michigan during her
years as a water polo player at Stanford, and now as a
member of Team USA.
Nisbet has witnessed the program's growth firsthand,
as she has been a member of the team since its incep-
tion. Last night marked her final regular-season home
game as a Wolverine.
"If we had played this team my freshman year, it
would have been a blowout completely, more so than it
(was)," Nisbet said. "We wouldn't have even gotten a
goal, I don't think. This team has come so far in the last
three years, it's incredible."
In two weeks, Nisbet's postseason home career will
come to an end as well, as Michigan will host the Cen-
tral Water Polo Association championship. If the
Wolverines prevail in that championship, they will trav-
el to the Eastern Championship. A win there would
give them a bid to the Final Four.
"It's been a crazy four years and its been a wonderful
four years, but we've got a couple of championships to
win before it's over," Nisbet said. "So it doesn't really
feel like the end of anything yet."'

Category: Latest brush with law

Weber

Iverson

Edge

Ticketed after turning left
onto State Street from Huron
while returning home

Allegedly pulling gun on
two men while searching
for wife

Iverson

Category: Signature move

Weber

Iverson

Edge

Dry humping (see
Feb. 13, 200 issue of
Weekend Magazine)

Crossover dribble

Iverson

Category: Best gift for mom .

Weber

Iverson

Edge

Bathrobe

Red Jaguar

Iverson

Category: Self-proclaimed trendsetter of ...

Weber

Iverson
Cornrows

Edge

The Claw

Iverson

See WEBER, Page 10

IU

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Skills You Need to Get Your First Job

It's Time
to Get
Down to
Business.

Biz World 101: Two weeks of business
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Whatever your degree, and whether you plan to open
your own business, work freelance or search for a
9-to-5 in the marketplace, your business skills will
be a key part of your success.
Biz World 101 is a two-week, intensive non-credit

m

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