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April 19, 2005 - Image 21

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The Michigan Daily, 2005-04-19

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The Michigan Daily - Special Graduation Section - Tuesday, April 19, 2005 - 9B

Triple play: Edwards spurs Blue to OT


By Gennaro Rilice
November 1, 2004
With just under nine minutes left on Saturday,
the Big House was as quiet as it has been in years.
DeAndra Cobb's 64-yard touchdown run gave
Michigan State a seemingly insurmountable 27-10
lead. But the Wolverines weren't quite ready to fold
in the 97th meeting with their in-state rival.
"One of the things that we always talk about
around here (is) the things that it takes to be a cham-
pionship team," Michigan coach Lloyd Carr said.
"There's a lot of things you have to be able to do:
You have to continue to believe in yourself when
things look bleak."
True freshman quarterback Chad Henne, who
finished 24-of-35 for 273 yards and a career-high
four touchdowns, adhered to Carr's demands for
optimism: "We were sitting on the sideline and
everybody was down, and I was thinking in my
head, 'There's still a chance."'
And following an unbelievable finish to regula-
tion, three Braylon Edwards touchdowns and three
overtime periods, the Wolverines had completed
one of the most improbable wins in school history,
prevailing 45-37.
"This is the greatest game I've ever played in,"
senior cornerback Marlin Jackson said. "The feel-
ing is unexplainable. It's one of the greatest victories
I've ever been a part of, and maybe one of the great-
est ever at the University of Michigan."
Michigan moved from 12th to 10th in the Asso-
ciated Press rankings and remained unbeaten in the
Big Ten.
Michigan (6-0 Big Ten, 8-1 overall) began on the
comeback trail in its drive following Cobb's touch-
down. The Wolverines put together a nine-play,
86-yard drive that ended with a 24-yard Garrett
Rivas field goal with 6:27 left to bring Michigan
within 14. The drive was fueled by a 46-yard bomb
to Edwards, who had struggled in the game's first
three quarters.
On the ensuing kickoff, sophomore fullback
Brian Thompson recovered Rivas's onside kick.
"It was not meant for us to lose," Edwards said.
"If you get an onside kick, it's like maybe we're sup-
posed to win. It's divine intervention - it comes
from above. I got down on my knees and thanked
God. I said, 'God, you put us in a situation to make
it happen.' "
Henne got the Wolverines in the endzone in just
15 seconds, completing an 11-yard pass to Mike
Hart - which was coupled with a 15-yard face-
mask penalty against Michigan State - and then
airing it out to Edwards for a 36-yard touchdown.
On the reception, Michigan State cornerback Jaren
Hayes had positioning, but Edwards just reached
over Hayes's head and ripped the ball away before
coming down in the endzone.
After two penalties on Michigan State's next
drive - a problem that marred coach John L.
Smith's team all day as it accumulated 14 penalties
for 123 yards - the Spartans punted to Michigan
with 3:24 left.
Hart started the drive with a 26-yard run up the
Michigan sideline. Immediately following the run,


Michigan wide receiver Braylon Edwards had 11 catches and 189 yards in the Wolverines' late-game comeback win over Michigan State on Oct. 30, 2004.

Edwards reflected the mounting excitement with a
shimmy at the Michigan State 20-yard line. And on
the very next play, Edwards sent Michigan Stadium
into absolute pandemonium, as he once again beat
Hayes in single coverage for a 21-yard touchdown,
tying the game at 27.
"(Edwards) made some unbelievable catches, and
if he doesn't make those plays, we're not standing
here," Carr said. "He was an All-American today,
and he's been an All-American all year long."
Michigan State (3-2, 4-4) tried to end the game
with a 51-yard field goal into a strong wind as time
expired, but kicker Dave Rayner missed short and
In overtime, Michigan State won the coin toss and
elected to play defense first. The Wolverines failed
to get a first down in their drive and took a 30-27
lead on a 34-yard field goal by Rivas. Michigan State
drove the ball effectively in its possession and faced a

third-and-one from the four-yard line. The Spartans
sent Cobb, who finished with a career-high 205 yards
rushing, straight up the gut. But Michigan's defen-
sive line got a great push, and senior Roy Manning
tackled Cobb for a two-yard loss. Rayner converted
a 23-yard field goal to send the game into a second
Michigan State had the initial drive that time
around. After a 15-yard completion from Damon
Dowdell - who played the entire second half after
Spartan starter Drew Stanton dislocated his right
shoulder on a second-quarter hit by LaMarr Wood-
ley - to Agim Shabaj, Michigan State rode Jason
Teague into the endzone, giving the junior the ball
three straight times.
The Wolverines tied the game at 37 with a five-
play drive that ended in the corner of the endzone on
a third-and-goal touchdown grab by an outstretched
Jason Avant, who had dislocated his finger earlier

in the game.
In the third overtime, Michigan had the first pos-
session. On third-and-nine, Henne found Edwards
wide open over the middle, and the senior scam-
pered into the endzone for a 24-yard touchdown.
"They were trying to decide who was going to
take me," Edwards said "Toward the end of the
game, they were manning Roderick Maples up,
so whenever Hayes was on me, they would switch
and put Maples back on me. So I think Hayes was
expecting Maples to come over and he didn't, so
they were probably a little off guard."
Following two sub-par games, Edwards put his
name back in the Heisman Trophy race with 11
catches and 189 yards for three touchdowns. Most
of Edwards's production came in the fourth quarter
and overtime.
"I knew what number they were going to dial,
and I knew I had to answer the call," Edwards said,.

After a spectacular two-point conversion catch
by Tim Massaquoi (by NCAA rules, teams must go
for two after the second overtime period), Michigan
held a 45-37 lead.
Michigan State couldn't do much on what would
be its final drive, and again shot itself in the foot with
a big offensive pass interference penalty on tight end
Eric Knott. On fourth down, Dowdell made one last
heave to the endzone, but senior Markus Curry
broke up the pass intended for wide receiver Aaron
Alexander and the celebration began.
"We just kept fighting," junior safety Ernest
Shazor said. "Coach Carr kept telling us we could
do it, and we believe in coach Carr 100 percent."
The Wolverines received another stellar perfor-
mance from Mike Hart. The true freshman rushed
for 224 yards and a touchdown on 33 carries,
becoming the first Wolverine ever to rush for 200
ards inthreeensecutve aimes.

Stickers bring home natty for 'M'
By Bob Hunt
November 19, 2001

KENT, Ohio - Years from now, people won't remember that
yesterday the Michigan field hockey team played the consensus
No. 1 team in the country. They won't remember that its opponent
had six senior starters.
But they will remember that these women were the leaders and
the best.
Led by the incredible play of senior goaltender Maureen Tasch
and a great all-around defensive effort, the Michigan field hockey
team knocked off top-ranked Maryland 2-0 to capture the NCAA
Division I National Championship and Michigan's first national
title in a women's sport.
"I'm happy to bring another one home for the Wolverines,"
said Michigan coach Marcia Pankratz. "Men's programs, wom-
en's programs, revenue, non-revenue, it doesn't matter. We're just
really proud to be a part of the University."
r This completes a resurgence to a program that had never made
the NCAA tournament until 1999, when the Terrapins defeated
the Wolverines in the title game.
"It's pretty darn exciting," Michigan Athletic Director Martin
said last night. "Being the first of anything is pretty historic."
Tasch pulled out the first shutout in a championship game
since 1996. She stopped 13 shots against the nation's No. 1 scor-
ing offense, giving the first field hockey title to a school west of
Virginia since Iowa won in 1986.
Oviously nothing could be better than this and it still hasn't
quite all processed in my mind," Tasch said. "I haven't cried like
everyone else yet."
Maryland controlled the play early, but with two minutes
remaining in the first half, Kristi Gannon sent a crossing
pass from the far right side through the Maryland defense,
and Maryland keeper Ashley Hohnstine somehow found
Big Ten freshman of the year Adrienne Hortillosa in front
of a wide-open net to put the ball home, giving Michigan
the lead.
"The first five minutes, they really kind of came at us, and I
think then we kind of got our jitters out and sold ourselves and got
back in it," said Michigan midfielder Jessica Rose.
Just after intermission, Michigan stunned the crowd of 984
again as Gannon found Rose at the top of the circle off a penalty
corner. Rose blasted it into the net to give the underdog Wolver-
ines a two-goal advantage.
Maryland dominated play for the rest of the game, but the
Michigan defense, led by Tasch, Stephanie Johnson and Cath-
erine Foreman, staved off the Terrapins.
"The last 20 minutes they really had us on our heels, but we
held on," Rose said.
Maryland fired 11 shots in the second half, but Tasch
made one incredible save after another. Even after Mich-


Forward April Fronzoni helped lead Michigan to a national title.
igan forward April Fronzoni was called off the field with
about 12 minutes remaining after receiving a yellow card
for tackling a player from behind, the constant adversity
only made Michigan stronger.
"I felt like with each little new challenge they were put with, I
just knew that we would get even stronger," Tasch said.
Said Johnson: "I felt like the No. 1 team today maybe didn't
have the ups and downs and the adversity to relish what we had
been in. So we knew what sort of great opportunity we had been
presented with today."


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