October 20, 2006
STe fSitot Baig
hat trick i
By Ian Robinson
Daily Sports Writer
Mark Mitera didn't score a
point last night. But his stick
might've deserved one.
With the game tied and Miami
on the power play, RedHawk
a defenseman Geoff Smith col-
lected the puck near center ice
and looked to
head toward !
the goal. MICHIGAN 6
' tripped on Mark Mitera's stick,
which was still lying on the ice
after getting caught in a defend-
er's jersey on an earlier shift.
With Smith on the ground
P and the puck drifting aimlessly,
j sophomore Andrew Cogliano
took the puck and put it past
goalie Charlie Effinger to give
No. 5 Michigan its first lead of
the night (2-1) on the way to a
"Yeah, I want an assist on
that," Mitera joked.
C Lucky bounces like that
allowed the Wolverines (1-0-0
CCHA, 3-0-0 overall) to beat
No. 9 Miami in their CCHA
opener at Yost Ice Arena last
night in a game that was closer
than the scoreboard showed.
lets second straight
in Wolverine win
"It wasn't like we were out-
playing them; that was a pret-
ty evenly played, hard-fought
game," Michigan coach Red
Berenson said. "You've got to
get some breaks. But if you work
hard, you get some breaks."
A primary beneficiary of
those lucky bounces was junior
Chad Kolarik, who scored a
hat trick for the second straight
game. All three of his goals
came in the third period.
Kolarik netted what turned
out to be the game-winning
goal nine minutes into the third
period. The forward took a
loose puck in front of the blue
line and sent it past Effinger to
put Michigan ahead 4-2.
"He's an opportunist," Beren-
son said of Kolarik, who has
notched seven goals this year.
"He's got confidence right
The Abington, Pa., native
also scored on a breakaway
a few minutes later when he
chose to take it in alone with
Cogliano to his right. Kolarik
added an empty-netter at 18:59
to ice the game.
"When we did come out (of
our zone), we created some out-
numbered rushes and oppor-
tunities," Berenson said. "And
we were able to capitalize on
But Berenson said the team's
eagerness to break out into the
offensive rush had some defen-
"Everyone is anxious to get
the puck and go, but are we as
anxious if we lose the puck to
come back and that cost us two
goals in the game?" Berenson
Miami (0-1-0, 3-2-0) took the
lead at 16:56 of the first period
when Gary Staffes's shot went
over Michigan goalie Billy Sau-
Wolverine forward David
Rohlfs, who scored two points
in the game, tied it up by put-
ting a T.J. Hensick pass behind
Effinger five minutes into the
After Cogliano's short-hand-
ed goal, Miami tied it up. But
forward Kevin Porter broke
the deadlock quickly, scoring
a power-play goal just 27 sec-
onds later to put Michigan up
Michigan opened its season
with wins against unranked
Connecticut and Alabama-
Huntsville last weekend, mak-
Michigan forward Chad Kolarik netted all three of his goals, including the eventual game-winner, In the third period.
ing last night's game with a
top-10 team and the defend-
ing conference champion is an
accurate indicator for where it
Corner kicks key "
to Blue's victory
By Chris Herring
Daily Sports Writer
The phrase "If it ain't broke,
don't fix it" holds little weight with
Nancy Cox. McmN 5
that at this point late in the season,
her team needs to be making the
minor adjustments to gain advan-
tages over the competition.
And yesterday against Virginia
Commonwealth, it was clear that the
Wolverines made those changes suc-
Carrying a four-game winning
streak into the match, No. 18 Michi-
gan (3-1 Big Ten, 10-7 overall) used
a new defensive scheme to stifle the
Rams' offense, limiting the visitors
to just three corner opportunities en
route to a 5-1 victory at Ocker Field.
Virginia Commonwealth (1-
3 Colonial Athletic, 3-11) did not
receive its first corner opportunity
until the 48th minute of the match.
The Wolverines used a more indi-
vidual approach on the defensive
end, allowing them to force turn-
overs deep in the Rams' zone.
"As we move toward the end of the
season and the Big Ten Tournament,
defensively, we have to eliminate
opposing team's corner opportuni-
ties," Cox said. "It means playing
great defense individually and doing
the same thing collectively."
Michigan's defense was domi-
nant, but the team's offense had just
as much success. Four different Wol-
verines scored in the win, and the
team drew a season-high 18 penalty
corners while taking 31 shots.
After falling behind 1-0 early in
the first half, senior captain Kara
Lentz drilled a shot past the Rams'
goalkeeper on Michigan's first cor-
ner opportunity to knot the score at
According to Lentz, the Wolver-
ines have made converting corner
opportunities a priority.
"We've started something called
a 20 percent solution,' Lentz said.
"Our main objective right now is
to convert at least 20 percent of our
corners. It finally kicked in today,
and hopefully we will continue to get
better as we move toward the confer-
The next Wolverine goal also
came courtesy of the penalty corner.
This time, it was junior Kristen Tiner
who scored, putting Michigan ahead
2-1 with just five minutes left in the
half. Junior Jilliane Whitfield and
senior captain Mary Fox assisted on
the first two Michigan tallies.
With just more than three min-
Junior Ashley Lennington contributed a goal in the second half of
Michigan's 5-1 victory over Virginia Commonwealth yesterday.
utes left in the period, Fox gave the goals was not to give up a defensive
Wolverines a 3-1 cushion going into corner," Riley said. "It definitely
halftime. She knocked home her helps me when the field players are
third goal of the year on a pass from controlling the play, and (we're)
freshman Paige Laytos. keeping the ball at the other end of
Lentz and junior Ashley Lenning- the field. It keeps a lot of the pressure
ton both added scores in the second off of me."
half, and the Wolverines picked up The team is confident going into
their fifth straight victory, moving to Sunday's critical match with No.
a perfect 6-0at home this season. 5 Ohio State, which is locked in a
Although several different players three-way tie with Michigan and
scored in the win, the real story of Indiana for the conference lead.
the game was Michigan's impressive "We've all been waiting to play
defensive scheme, which held the Ohio State for the past year" Lentz
Rams in check. said. "It's definitely going to be a
"We came in with a new defensive very intense game. I already know it
gameplan this week, and one of our will be a good one."
"It's a good early test," guys what to expect."
Rohlfs said. "The real test is to The Wolverines will get
come out strong in our league. another early-season test from
To get the strong competition the RedHawks tonight at 8:05
off the bat, it teaches the new p.m. in Yost Ice Arena.
to World Series
F or all the people plan- don died. He was hitby a car."
ning on making the trip to On the street where the Malings
Detroit for Game 1 of the lived, all the mailboxes were at the
World Series on Saturday, I know end of the private drive across the
one person who isn't. main street. Brandon and his older
Shoot, he won't brother had biked
even be able to watch down to get the news-
the game on TV. dpaper, probably to
But trust me. It isn't read up on the Tigers.
because he doesn't like When they got to the
Detroit. end of the streeta car
No, it's because my was about to pull onto
good friend, Brandon the private drive. But
Malling, died more recognizing the boys,
than four years ago the driver waited until
at 9. KEVIN they had crossed.
As the Tigers continue WRIGHT Unfortunately,the
to make their unbeliev- carbehind her didn't.
able run in the postsea- The Sixth Man Instead, he moved into
son, I couldn't help but the passing lane, and by
stop and think about one Detroit the time he saw Brandonit was
fan that won'tbe able to see it. too late.
Growing up, I never thought But reality didn't really sink in
I'd meet anyone with as a strong when I first found out. It was too
competitive drive as I've until I met much for me to handle and process.
Brandon. Even though I was seven I still thought the next time I saw
years his elder and more than twice the Malings,Brandon wouldbe
his size, he never once turned down right there with them, waiting with
a challenge. a smile on his freckled face, a bat
With him, winning was it. I in his hand and donning his Bobby
can remember the countless times Higginson T-shirt.
when we played a sport and he The next Sunday, as I sat in
came out the loser. It never sat well the pew at church, it finally hit
with him. You always knew what me. Watching the Mallings file in
was coming. Sometimes a pout- across the aisle, I knew Brandon
ing session, sometimes a temper was gone. I would neverbe able
tantrum. to make up for that disappointing
We played the simple game of strikeout. I would neverbe able to
wiffle ball more often than not. help Brandon win when we played
When our two families got togeth- wiffle ball.
er, a heated game always broke out. That day was the lasttime I
One game sticks out in my cried.
mind. The summerbefore he died, In the immediate weeks fol-
and we were playing at a family lowing his death, I didn't think I'd
friend's house. The way the teams be able to visit with the Mallings
usually work would be that I would knowing that he wasn't there any-
take Brandon and his younger more, that such a void hadbeen
brother (because I was the oldest) ripped open in their lives.
and my brother would field a team Every time I talked to his broth-
with Brandon's older brother and ers, I could see Brandon's face. I
sister. was half-tempted to turn around
Trailing (as was usually the case) and see him come running out of
by one run in the final inning, I the door ready for a game of wiffle
stepped up to the plate. Brandon ball.
stood on second waiting for me As the years have passed, I've
to drive him in. But I never did. found my peace with his death.
Instead, my brother struck me out Sure, I still remember the good
to end the game. times, like when he and I would
And wouldn't you know it, sit in the gazebo with abowl of
Brandon collapsed to the ground ice cream and pretend to be Josh
in tears. Lewin and Kirk Gibson broadcast-
I can still hear his pleading voice ing Tigers games. But I know he's
asking me why I had to strike out. I in abetter place now.
had no answer. Tomorrow, I, along with Tiger
Then, the next summer rolled fans everywhere, will watch the
around. One day in August, I left Detroit game, but in the back of my
work early. I wanted to get home in mind, I'll still see Brandon.
time to leave with my family for a I just hope that my memory of
get together with the Mallings. As I Brandon won't fade as much as
walked in the front door, my mom that Bobby Higginson T-shirt his
sat atthe kitchen table crying softly younger brother now wears.
while my dad was standing overby
the counter. - Wright can be reached
"Kevin' my mom said. "Bran- at firstname.lastname@example.org.
'Real deal' Wolverines take on Iowa
, By Stephanie Wright At his weekly press conference,
Daily Sports Editor Ferentz couldn't stop praising Mich-
igan's defense ... and its offense ...
Don't be surprised if you see a and its special teams. In fact, Ferentz
little maize and blue peeking out struggled to find a weak spot in the
from underneath Kirk Ferentz's Iowa second-ranked Wolverines.
sweatshirt tomorrow. "This is the best Michigan team
Itlturns outthe Hawkeyes' coach is I've seen (as Iowa's head coach), and
quite enamored with this year's Wol- it's been eight years now," Ferentz
verines. said. "Balanced, deep, talented -
they are the real deal. We'll have our
Just like the Hawkeyes unexpect-
-edly did last weekend. Ranked No. 15
at the time, Iowa blew a 21-7 lead and
iArrecorded an embarrassing 31-28 road
ERRORIST . +" loss to Indiana, which hadn't beaten a
#1 #3 top-15 team in almost 20 years.
PURPLEBLACK WHITE ON BLACK RED & LACK Michigan wide receiver Adrian
MAIL ORDER T-SHIRTS Arrington, a Cedar Rapids, Iowa
native, said he watched the game in
16 EA POSTAGE INC S-XL the Michigan hotel and was "a little
shocked" to see the usually disci-
plined Hawkeyes collapse.
But the Wolverines say they're
I U expecting to see a different Iowa
BUMPER STICKERS 31$5.50 team take the field in the Big House
SEEIMAGESAT BENTOM.COM/BADBUSH "You can't go back and look at that
SEND ORDERS & R INS SCRE RINT game because every team is going to
ANN ARBOR, M 48105 bring its 'A' game when they come
and play us," linebacker Prescott
Burgess said. "We are one of the top
teams right now.... We have got to
come hard and bring our 'A' game as
well, because if we think we're going
to come (in) and just relax in this
game, we're ripe for defeat."
After last weekend's solid victory
over Penn State, it's hard to imagine
Michigan letting up - especially on
defense. The front fournotched a sea-
son-high seven sacks, knocking out
the Nittany Lions' top two quarter-
backs out of the game in the process.
This week, Michigan gets a chance
to take down Iowa quarterback Drew
Tate. The senior ranks second in the
Big Ten in passing, averaging almost
250 yards through the air per game.
Despite their top-notch pass rush,
the Wolverines said they'll have
their hands full with the experienced
Tate. Cornerback Brandon Harrison
described Tate as a "quick guy" who
loves to roll out and look downfield.
Safety Brandent Englemon pointed
to Tate's toughness as his greatest
strength. And Michigan coach Lloyd
Carr said Tate has "wonderful athletic
ability to go with a very god arm."
"We have to go into the game
knowing that we have to stop him to
stop the offense," Burgess said. "You
see (a lot of) talk on TV (about) how
he's a great quarterback, and it's true.
... If we put pressure on him, then we
have a chance at winning"
Burgess would know. Lastyearthe
Wolverines let Tate passfor 288 yards
and two touchdowns, and it took two
big late-game stops (one near the end
of the fourth quarter, one in overtime)
for Michigan to pull out an overtime
The Hawkeyes might have to rely
on Tate's ability to get out of the
pocket a little morethan usual,thanks
to the rash of injuries they've suf-
fered on the offensive side of the ball
this season. Iowa lost wide receiver
Dominique Douglas and left tackle
Dace Richardson against Indiana last
week. Starting running back Albert
Young has been medically cleared to
play, though he said he won't be 100
percent by game time.
It's almost enough to change
Ferentz's admiration into fear.
"(Michigan's defense is) veteran
at the back and very, very strong and
experienced up front," Ferentz said.
"That's a pretty salty combination."