The Wolverines had to over-
come a lot to win this game.
The SportsMonday Column
Field Hockey drops to
Louisville in overtime.
HOOPS, THERE IT IS
Basketball is back. The men's and wom-
en's teams kicked off the season at
Big Ten Media Day yesterday.
IRTS .E '
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Michigan 33, NORTHWESTERN 17
Northwestern can't hold Blue back
minutes. In the Wolverines' two conference
losses to Wisconsin and Minnesota, they held
possession of the ball for 15 fewer minutes than
their opponents. That disparity was especially
great in the second half.
The Wolverines reversed that script on Sat-
urday. Northwestern had possession of the ball
for 10 minutes in the second half and just four
minutes in the fourth quarter.
"Our offense did an outstanding job today
controlling the ball," cornerback Grant Mason
said. "I'm sure we won the time of possession,
which helps us on defense. We prepare all
week to play 80 snaps. Because our offense
played as well as it did (Saturday), we didn't
have to play that."
All told, Michigan's defense was on the field
for 66 plays - its second-lowest total in confer-
ence play - thanks to its ability to make big
stops down the stretch and the offense's ability
to put together sustained drives.
Without injured tailback Mike Hart for the
fifth time this season, the Wolverines relied on
freshman Kevin Grady and junior Jerome Jack-
son again this week. Grady got the start - the
first of his career - and gained 69 yards on 20
carries, including a one-yard touchdown run on
Michigan's opening drive. But for the second
week in a row, Jackson received the bulk of the
carries down the stretch. He finished with 24
carries for 105 yards - his first 100-yard rush-
ing day - and 67 of those yards came in the
"Jerome Jackson - you can't say enough
about him," Carr said. "He had tough yardage
in there, and he's tough - for the most part he
comes out on the other end even though he's not
the biggest guy. ... You can't put a measure on
what he's giving his team."
On Michigan's last four offensive drives,
quarterback Chad Henne attempted just four
passes while the Wolverines rushed 25 times,
including one stretch of eight straight runs.
Even Henne got in on the rushing action; the
sophomore gained eight yards on a third-and-
See WILDCATS page 5B
M-ichigans sconvincing win
brightens team's future
VANSTON - After Michigan's last defense shut out Northwestern's high-octane
five games were decided by a com- offense - which was averaging 529 yards and
bined 14 points, we finally 37 points per game - in the sec-
got what we wanted. ond half. The placekicking and
Yes, the Wolverines at long last punting units were both lethal.
broke their streak of nail-biting, For the first time since Sept. 17
heart-attack-inducing finishes with a against Eastern Michigan - if
decisive 16-point victory over North- that game even counts - we saw
western at Ryan Field on Saturday the complete performance that so
night. There weren't any game-win- many had expected for so long.
ning drives in the final moments. Well, kind of.
Overtime never loomed. A single You see, Mike Hart - relegat-
small mistake or nuanced heads-up ed to the sideline with an ankle
play didn't decide the outcome. GABE injury - didn't account for any
No, Michigan won this game EDELSON of those numerous ground yards.
handily, controlling the clock and Honest Gabe Defensive star LaMarr Woodley
outplaying Northwestern on offense, sat out to nurse a badly bruised
defense and special teams. The Wolverines piled arm. Chad Henne was uninspiring in throwing
up 253 rushing yards to the Wildcats' 89. The See EDELSON, page 5B
Icers split .
By James V. Dowd
Daily Sports Writer
FAIRBANKS - Just under two minutes into Saturday night's con-
test between No. 1 Michigan (1-1-1 CCHA, 5-1-1
overall) and No. 20 Alaska-Fairbanks (1-1-0, 3-
2-1), Nanooks forward Justin Binab was ejected ALASKA 4
from the game and slapped with a five minute
major for checking from behind. Four minutes G
later, it was clear that the Wolverines learned their ALASKA 0
lesson from Friday night's 4-2 defeat as they drew
first blood in their 4-0 victory on Saturday. The shut out was senior
goaltender Noah Ruden's first of his caireer.
Michigan struggled to set up in the Nanooks' zone on Friday night
- they were pressured into turnovers and were outskated to loose
pucks. But during the course of Binab's penalty on Saturday, the Wol-
verines worked the puck easily around the perimeter, looking for an
open shot. The prospects for an early goal improved when Alaska-Fair-
banks defenseman Jordan Hendry was sent to the box for two minutes
after checking from behind. Yet the shots still didn't open up, despite
the fact that the Nanooks only managed to clear their own zone once.
Just when it looked as if the Nanooks had the Wolverines' number
once more after Hendry's penalty expired, junior forward T.J. Hensick
weaved his way through the defense and pushed the puck across the
Alaska-Fairbanks net. The shot found its way to sophomore Kevin Por-
ter, who easily one-timed it into the net.
"I thought it was a good start," Michigan coach Red Berenson said.
"It was important that we not let them get the crowd into the game. I
thought we did a good job with that. We had that five-minute power
play and you'd like to score more than one goal, but it's important to
get that one."
The goal was the first of four Michigan power-play goals on the night,
the others were scored by Hensick and defensemen Matt Hunwick and
Jack Johnson, who all added two assists in the game.
Johnson extended Michigan's lead in the second period when he
lifted a wrist shot off an Alaska-Fairbanks defenseman and into the net.
M' runs over competition
toward fourth straight title
By Bryan Hamilton
Daily Sports Writer
MINNEAPOLIS - On a dark and rainy Sunday
at the University of Minnesota golf course the No.
3 Michigan women's cross country team overcame
tough weather conditions to claim the Big Ten Cham-
pionship in an impressive postseason opener. The title
was the fourth consecutive for the Wolverines as the
national contenders placed five runners in the top-14.
"We prepared well for this week and the girls ran
a good race out there," coach Mike McGuire said. "I
think Aly (Kohlmeier) was a little disappointed not
winning it all, but she ran strong and a lot of our girls
had some of their better showings this season."
Sophomore Alyson Kohlmeier battled with Illinois
junior Cassie Hunt for the top spot for the duration of
the race. At one point, Kolhmeier was stride for stride
with the three-time all American in the final minutes
of the race and actually held the lead for thirty sec-
onds before Hunt was able to overcome her and take
first place. While Kolhmeier could not capture the
individual title she did pace Michigan with a time of
21:02:74 and a second-place finish. Following Kolh-
meier was a cast of Wolverines keying the well-bal-
anced victory that included redshirt sophomore Erin
Webster, redshirt freshman Nicole Edwards, senior
Rebecca Walter, and redshirt junior Arianne Field
who finished seventh, eighth, 11th, and 14th, respec-
"I was really impressed with Webster and Edwards,"
McGuire said. "I think those girls probably ran their
best races of the year out there today. "And I heard
that Stewart fell, so I was really impressed that she
was able to get back in the race and finish well."
McGuire heard right. While senior Jessie Stewart
was the lone Wolverine to hit the deck, other runners
experienced similar difficulties maintaining their
footing on a course that was muddy and saturated
from rain that fell all morning leading up to the race.
"I was really worried about falling at times,"
Edwards said. "Coming down some of those hills you
really had to be cautious where you were stepping.
Overall, it just made the race feel a lot slower."
While the race may have been slower, it certainly
didn't slow the Wolverines. Michigan came into the
conference championship having won or tied for first
in all four of its team scoring events this season. It is
the kind of success that has been accomplished by
working together out on the course.
"We run in waves out there to help pace our
girls," McGuire said. "The girls in our front did a
real solid job."
See BIG TENS, page 6B
Sophomore Alyson Kohlmeler placed second at the Big Ten
M M EN'S CROSS COUNTRY
Harriers can't keep pace, take fifth place
By Bryan Hamilton
Daily Sports Writer
MINNEAPOLIS - Coming in with high expec-
tations, the Michigan men's cross country team
went to Minneapolis last weekend to compete for
the cross country Big Ten Championship. But, just
as the rain fell all morning, so did the hopes of the
score. The Wolverines, on the other hand, struggled to
implement their gameplan and stay in a pack out on the
"We just didn't work together out there," sophomore
Seth Thibodeau said.
"When we run, we usually pack up, but it just fell
apart. We didn't react to what was going on in the race,
and we never made our move together."
mance. The best thing we can do at this point is just put
this one behind us."
With regional and NCAA championships coming up,
that may be the very thing the Wolverines should do.
With a talented core of guys who have expectations to
perform well on the national level, the men's team is still
No. 17 in the country. Yet, if it is to meet these goals,
then the way Michigan recovers from this weekend's