The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Wednesday, January 10, 2007 - 7A
No goals? Not a
problem for Sauer
Senior David Rohlfs scored two goals to help lead Michigan past Bowling Green, 5-0.
Jcers start new year right
By NATE SANDALS
Daily Sports Writer
Chad Kolarik has already spoiled a
potential Billy Sauer shutout.
So last night,
when he committed NOTEBOOK
a penalty with just
under two minutes
to play and Michigan leading 5-0, the
junior forward had good reason to fear
"Against Quinnipiac (last year), he had
a shutout going and a puck banked off me
and went in," Kolarik recalled last night.
"When I took the penalty, I thought for
sure I was going to ruin it for him."
Fortunately for Kolarik and Sauer,
Bowling Green failed to score in the final
It was Sauer's first shutout since Jan.
6 of last year - his 18th birthday. Last
night, three days after turning 19, Sauer
expressed more relief than joy.
"I didn't really think it was going to
happen, to be honest with you," Sauer
said. "It was good to just to get it off my
The sophomore was justified in doubt-
ing the outcome after a shutout slipped
away on a Michigan Tech goal with just
1:16 to go in a Dec. 29 game at the Great
While Bowling Green's offense is noth-
ing to write home about, Sauer still put
forth a solid effort to keep the puck out of
Inthe first period,boredomwas Sauer's
biggest enemy. The Falcons managed just
one shot, and that came late in the frame.
"I was just looking up at the clock won-
dering when is this (first) period going to
end," Sauer joked. "It's hard to keep your-
self in the game."
That was evident as the Walworth,
N.Y., native struggled mightily in Novem-
ber and December. Now he must prove
last night's effort wasn't an anomaly.
The biggest positive for Sauer is that the
shutout is more than just notching a win.
"It's an earned shutout," Michigan
coach Red Berenson said. "It's not a shut-
out that he got by default. That was a posi-
tive step for him."
Hail! Hail! The gang's all here: For
the first time in more than amonth, every-
one on the Michigan roster was healthy
for last night's game.
The Wolverines suffered from an injury
bug in December when defensemen Jack
Johnson, Jason Dest and Steve Kampfer
all suffered shoulder injuries.
While Dest and Kampfer were back
for the GLI just before New Year's, John-
son and forward Andrew Cogliano were
absent for a different reason: The IIHF
World Junior Championships in Sweden.
Berenson is glad to have all his players
back for the second half of the season, but
not just because he has all his talent back.
He believes the players' return will reju-
venate the group's locker room and on-ice
"The team is like a family," Berenson
said. "When someone's missing, they're
missing, butcit's good to have them back."
Big jump: Johnson came back from
Sweden angry and for reasons other than
the United States failing to win gold. He
was also mad with Michigan's spot in the
The Wolverines entered last night's
game in sixth place.
After the team's 5-0 win, Michigan
didn't just move out of the middle of the
pack, it leapt.
The Maize and Blue vaulted over Ohio
State, Michigan State and Lake Superior
State to move into third in the conference
with 18 points.
Michigan has played the same number
of games as the Lakers, and one and two
fewer games thanthe Spartans and Buck-
Going into last night's game, John-
son called sixth place "unacceptable" for
Michigan. It's fair to say that third feels a
bit more comfortable for the Wolverines.
If Michigan can remain one of the top-
four teams in the conference, it will seal
a first-round bye in the CCHA playoffs,
which begin March 2.
A weekend off would benefit the Wol-
verines, who play each weekend for the
rest of the season and play just one game
at Yost Ice Arena in February.
By IAN ROBINSON
Daily Sports Writer
It had been a rocky road for the Michigan
The 14th-ranked Wolverines - who were
once ranked as high as No. 5 in the nation
- had lost four of their ---
last six games. IBGSU 0
But with the entire IMICHIGAN 5
roster together for the
first time since Dec. 2 and a game against
conference cellar dweller Bowling Green in
front of them, the Wolverines were in a posi-
tion to start the season's second half off on
the right foot.
And they did just that.
Michigan pummeled the Falcons, 5-0, at
Yost Ice Arena last night. .
"For everyone to come back together and
get a strong performance like we did tonight
is a good way to start the second half," senior
David Rohlfs said.
During the recent rough patch, Michi-
gan coach Red Berenson had been critical
of how his team failed to take control at the
start of games. But from the onset last night,
Michigan (9-5-0 CCHA, 14-8-0 overall) kept
the pressure on Bowling Green, generating
numerous scoring chances.
Junior Chad Kolarik broke through less
than three minutes into the game with
a redirection of a T.J. Hensick shot for a
power-play goal, his 100th point as a Wol-
Although Michigan entered the locker
room after 20 minutes with just a one-goal
lead, the Wolverines limited the Falcons (3-
12-0, 5-17-1) to just one shot in the first peri-
od and peppered goalie Jimmy Spratt with
13 of their own.
Sophomore netminder Billy Sauer, who
has struggled lately, delivered his first shut-
out in more than a year, saving all 22 shots
he faced. Bowling Green never sustained
enough pressure to faze the Walworth, N.Y.,
Clinging to a one-goal lead late in the
first period, Rohlfs nearly made it a two-
goal margin with a breakaway attempt that
clanked off the crossbar.
But what he couldn't do with about two
minutes to go in the first, he accomplished
about two minutes into the second period.
Rohlfs benefited from a "knuckleball"shot
from the blue line that floated off the goalie's
glove and into the net, ending a four-game
point drought. At the post-game press con-
ference, neither Rohlfs, Sauer or Berenson
knew exactly what happened on the play,
but they gladly accepted the result.
After being paired with Hensick and
junior Kevin Porter for much of the year,
Rohlfs made his first appearance on the
team's third line alongside sophomores Tim
Miller and Brandon Naurato. And Berenson
liked what he saw out of that line.
"I thought Rohlfs was huge on that third
line for us," Berenson said. "They are so
good defensively, and they did some nice
things offensively as well."
Rohlfs continued his offensive contribu-
tions later with a breakaway goal midway
through the third to cap the win.
As conference season enters crunch time,
the Wolverines hope that the end of Rohlfs's
point skid will be a sign of things turning the
corner for their team, too.
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ARIES (Oct. 23 to Nov. 21)
(March 21to April 19) Time spent alone will help you today
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upbeat. You feel sensitive to the needs of SAGITTARIUS
a friend. (Nov. 22 to Dec. 21)
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something, now is the time to ask. CAPRICORN
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(June 21to July 22) (Jan. 20to Feb. 18)
Conversations with family members You feel you need to get away today.
are sympathetic and supportive today. You want to escape. Enjoy good times
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who needs your help, or possibly vice dreams. (Everyone wants to escape at
versa. Do what you can. times.)
(July 23 to Aug. 22) (Feb. 19 to March 20)
Because your imagination is in over- If you can use your resources to help
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he did. (It's good to practice kindness.)
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(Aug. 23 to Sept. 22) and gutsy. You take life head-on. You're
Be careful while shopping today. Your realistic, honest and sometimes blunt.
eyes are bigger than your stomach and You apply the same standards to yourself
all that. You might buy something you that you do to others. You have strong
can't afford. Just don't get yourself in opinions, and you stick by them. Others
trouble. find you to be colorful and fascinating.
LIBRA They admire you. In the year ahead, you
(Sept. 23 to Oct. 22) will focus on partnerships and your clos-
Because you're sensitive to other peo- est friendships.
ple's moods today, you're also sympa- Birthdate of: Rod Stewart, singer;
thetic. You easily can put yourself in George Foreman, boxer; Pat Benatar,
their situation. You want to help. singer.
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