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April 19, 2005 - Image 22

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The Michigan Daily, 2005-04-19

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10B - The Michigan Daily - Special Graduation Section - Tuesday, April 19, 2005
A NIT to remember '-

10

By Dan Rosen
April 2, 2004
NEW YORK - The Michigan basketball team found a
way to bounce back.
After pushing aside the disappointment of being left off
the NCAA Tournament bracket just a few weeks ago, the
Wolverines rebounded to win the NIT with a 62-55 victory
over Rutgers at Madison Square Garden last night.
"We're definitely on a high right now," freshman forward
Brent Petway said. "Selection night we may have been on
a low, but then we got that phone call (from the NIT), and
we knew we had to go play some ball."
The Wolverines made it interesting down the stretch
against the Scarlet Knights. With 1:51 remaining, senior
Bernard Robinson gave Michigan a 56-48 lead with a
pair of free throws. But the team hit just four of its next
nine foul shots to let Rutgers get back within four with
18 seconds left.
"We just knew we had to focus," Michigan guard Daniel
Horton said.
And that's exactly what the sophomore did, knocking
down two freebies from the charity stripe with seven sec-
onds on the clock to ice the win and the NIT title.
The Wolverines were once again led by the young backcourt
of Dion Harris and Horton, the tournament's MVP. The duo
combined for 27 points and eight assists on the night.
Harris got things rolling early. The freshman, who
was later named to the All-Tournament team, buried a 3-
pointer to cap a 9-2 Michigan run to start the game. The
Wolverines led by as many as nine in the opening stanza,
despite shooting just 38 percent from the field and hitting
just 6-of-li free throws.
Rutgers forward Herve Lamizana, a third-team All-Big
East selection, kept his team in the game in the first half
with an emphatic shot-blocking display. The 6-foot-10
senior tossed aside five Michigan shots in the first 20 min-

utes, including an authoritative swat of a Bernard Robin-
son dunk attempt.
In total, Lamizana finished just two blocks shy of
a triple-double - he had 19 points, 10 rebounds and
eight rejections. On the offensive end, the Ivory Coast
native repeatedly faked jump shots along the perimeter
to gain a step on Michigan's defenders and get into the
paint for a shot.
Michigan did manage to shut down Quincy Douby, the
Scarlet Knights' leading scorer, on Tuesday. The 6-foot-3
guard had 35 against Iowa State in the semifinal, but found
few good looks all night against the Wolverines, shooting
a dismal 1-for-13. He finally located the bottom of the net
four minutes into the second half on a runner from the
baseline to cut Michigan's lead to 41-31. The freshman fin-
ished with just two points.
"I knew they were going to focus on me," Douby said.
"I know they watched film and they've seen some of my
weaknesses, and they (exploited) my weaknesses."
The New York crowd was largely behind Rutgers, located
in nearby New Jersey, creating a hostile road environment
for the Wolverines. At points, it seemed to rattle Michigan,
but the team found a way to remain level-headed.
"We were talking at halftime and throughout the second
half about poise," Michigan coach Tommy Amaker said. "I
think the crowd made it a very electric atmosphere. That
makes you play faster than you want to."
It's been almost seven months since Michigan won
its appeal to the NCAA, negating its second year of
postseason probation. After failing to make the NCAA
Tournament, it looked like the Wolverines would fail to
capitalize on the decision. But Amaker wasn't about to
let that happen.
"To learn that we became postseason eligible at the
beginning of the year, we tried to make a move this sea-
son," Amaker said. "And I think our players have done that
in a fine fashion to make our University proud."

to

RYAN WEINER/Daily
Bernard Robinson led the Wolverines to the 2004 NIT championship after Michigan won its appeal to end its postseason probation.

National title eludes Icers again

By Bob Hunt
April 11, 2003

BUFFALO, N.Y. - It seemed like the
Michigan hockey team was finally going to
take that next step. After coming out and
dominating the first period, developing a
2-0 second-period lead, the Wolverines had
a berth in the NCAA national title game in
their grasp.
But for the third straight year, it wasn't
meant to be.
Minnesota goals late in the second period
and early in the third gave freshman Thom-
as Vanek a chance to score in overtime, and
the Golden Gophers defeated Michigan to
advance to their second straight title game.
At 8:55 in overtime, Vanek got away from
junior alternate captain Andy Burnes behind
the net before he received the puck and put it
between goaltender Al Montoya's right shoul-
der and the post.
The defeat was the seventh national
semifinal loss in nine NCAA Frozen Four
appearances for the Wolverines in the past
12 years.

"We really came in here feeling like we the lead three minutes after Ortmeyer's goal.
had a chance to win it," Burnes said. Montoya had stopped two initial shots, but
"We had the chemistry all year long and the puck trickled past him toward the net,
the leadership. I still feel like we should have allowing forward Troy Riddle to come by the
won that game." net and poke it just past the goal line.
Michigan got the vast majority of the scor- Minnesota then tied the game 1:35 into
ing chances in the first period, outshooting the third period when freshman Gino Guyer
Minnesota 15-5 and scoring at 9:33 when received a pass in the middle of the zone from
freshman Andrew Ebbett passed the puck off sophomore Barry Tallackson and one-timed
the draw to fellow freshman Brandon Kalen- it through Montoya's legs.
iecki, who wristed the puck past Minnesota Michigan had numerous chances to take the
goaltender Travis Weber's glove. But the Wol- lead in overtime, headlined by when sopho-
verines mustered just one goal in the period more Jason Ryznar got the puck with the
in part to some spectacular saves by Weber. entire net wide open. But Minnesota defender
"We really needed to score more than one Paul Martin dove in front of Ryznar to save
goal in the first period," Michigan coach Red the shot and the game with his stick.
Berenson said. "We had them on their heels, The loss ends the career of six Michigan
and we needed to make those chances count seniors, including Ortmeyer and alternate captain
because you knew that it was not going to be John Shouneyia, who have stayed with the pro-
a one-sided game." gram while two classmates left early for the pro-
Senior two-year captain Jed Ortmeyer fessional ranks the past two summers.
received a pass from freshman Jeff Tambel- "When you lose, it's players like Jed Ort-
lini right in front and put the puck through meyer (who) don't get another chance at
Weber's legs, putting the Wolverines up two. something like this," Berenson said. "They've
But the Golden Gophers controlled much of given so much to the team and to the program,
the play in the second period and cut into and they don't get another chance."

4

FILE PHOTO
Michigan goalie Al Montoya couldn't hold off Minnesota in the Gophers' 3-2 win in the Frozen Four.

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