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September 04, 2007 - Image 47

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 2007-09-04

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The Michigan Daily U 2 /0
* Sparties make it easy ... and fun


Streak Sparted?

t's not even fair, really.
Do you think I get a kick out of
Winning an argument against a State fan
about which school is better is like beat-
ing Matt Trannon in a spelling bee.
Or Jeff Smoker in
a sobriety contest. _
Or a Michigan
State clock operator
in a job-efficiency
Or Tom Izzo in an
contest. I
Or Mateen Cleaves SCOTT
in a ... nevermind. BELL
You get the picture.
I could go on, but Too Soon?
the fact is everyone
knows the truth
already. I go to one of the finest universi-
ties in America, both academically and
athletically. You, uh, had a good women's
hoops team a few years back.
So why should I have to point this out
to everyone?
I was raised with sound principles:
Don't kick someone while they're down,
pick on someone your own size - you
know, pretty routine stuff.
Telling Michigan State students
they're eventually going to be bagging
my groceries is pretty redundant (big
word, look it up).
So why should I do it?
Well, because I can. And because it's
You Sparties are like the annoying
little sibling who always wants attention.
So here you go, here's your attention.
Year after year, students at Michigan
State get geared up for this "rivalry." Last
time I checked, a series as lopsided as 67-
24-3 in favor of one team isn't considered
a rivalry. But hey, I know common sense
isn't your strongpoint - I'll cut you some

slack there.
Maybe I'm just a sick person, but I find
it funnyto listen to Spartan fans argue
why their school is better. But then I find
out that some of you're actually serious,
and it just makes me sad for humanity.
Let's tackle the usual arguments ...
Our basketball team is better than yours.
Congrats on owning us over a 10-year
period. Now you're just 21 games away
from tying us in the all-time series. But
don't worry, I'm sure Drew Neitzel and
Marquis Gray are the second coming of
Magic and Mo-Pete. And why do you
always seem to leave out other sports in
your arguments? Hmhmh. (Michigan
has never lost a Challenge Cup to Michi-
gan State, which rewards the best all-
around school for sports in a given year.)
Our school has hotter girls.
I hear a couple of them can even read,
too. Those are the keepers.
We party so much harder than you guys.
Once we learn how to riot after wins,
losses and ties in sporting events, maybe
we can enter your league. But until then,
I guess we're not worthy. And actually,
your habit of charging people for cups at
house parties is smart. You guys better
make money now, because I doubt that
Michigan State diploma is going to do
you any good after college.
Wefarm dem fields bettuh den you
Yes, yes you do. Congrats.
So there you go, you got attention. And
hey, if you ignore rankings for sports and
academics, ignore our esteemed alumni
compared to yours and ignore common
sense, then you may have that rivalry you
Sparties so desperately desire.
But be careful what you wish for.
Even though I couldn't care less about
Michigan State students, the Michigan
football players will. When your battered
Sparty squad limps into the Big House
fresh off a beating from Illinois (!), it will
get the attention you crave so much.

Adrian Arrington makes a catch during a
Michigan football game versus Michigan State.
But do you really want the attention
of an undefeated team that has your
number? Do you really want to anger the
most storied football program in history?
On Saturday, expect Drew Stanton to get
knocked down harder than a drunken stu-
dent trying to get in Amadou Ba's way.
Expect a sendoff for the only coach that
can actually make Bobby Williams look
like a good coach.
And most importantly, expect more
proof that the best thing about East Lansing
is that it's just 45 minutes away from Ann
- This column originally ran on Oct.
6, 2006 as part of a dueling column
series with Michigan State's student
newspaper. It was all in good fun. Bell is
the managing sports editor, football writer
and a sports columnist for the Daily. He
can be reached at scotteb umich.edu

Daily Sports Writer
In the final minute of the
game, as Michigan played
two men down, the noise
from the near-capacity Yost
Ice Arena crowd crescendoed
to match the intensity of the
closing moments.
With the help of its maize-
clad fans, No. 7 Michigan
held onto its 2-1 advantage to
beat No. 6 Michigan State last
night for its sixth consecutive
win. It was the Wolverines
second straight victory over
their intrastate rival. Michi-
gan had been winless in its
previous nine matches with
the Spartans.
After surrendering the
game's opening goal, the Wol-
verines responded with two
power-play tallies to surge
ahead for the victory.
Senior T.J. Hensick's goal
at the 6:28 mark of the third
period proved to be the game-
Hensick received a Kevin
Porter pass in the slot, and
the senior made the spectac-
ular look casual as he drifted
in on Spartan goalie Jeff Lerg
and lifted the puck past Lerg.
"You can't coach that - but
you can recruit it," Michigan
coach Red Berenson said.
Michigan (7-2-0 CCHA,
10-3-0 overall) clung to the
lead under heavy Spartan
pressure in the game's final
five minutes. With less than
two minutes remaining,
defenseman Jason Dest took

an interference penalty, and
Michigan State (4-4-1, 6-4-1)
pulled its goalie to mount a 6-
on-4 advantage for the final
78 seconds.
Concluding a strong all-
around game, Michigan
goalie Billy Sauer stood his
ground, stopping every shot,
the Spartans fired at him.
With the puck cleared out
of the zone for the final time,
Sauer skated toward Mich-
igan's bench with his glove
hand held high, meeting his
teammates at the blue line
when the final horn sounded.
The moment was a cul-
mination of the sophomore's
impressive month.
"I'm feeling great, and I
think the team in front of me
is feeling really good," Sauer
The six-game winning
streak is Sauer's career best
and the longest for the Wol-
verines since they won 12
straight during the 2004-05
Despite dominating play
early in the match, Michigan
trailed after Tim Kennedy
put on a puck-handling clinic
during his end-to-end trip to
the Michigan net early in the
second period.
Kennedy collected the
puck in his own defensive
zone, then split two Michigan
defenders before crossing the
Michigan blue line.
Once in the offensive zone,
Kennedy made a nifty move
around Dest before skat-
ing in all alone on Sauer and

patiently putting the puck
into the net.
Despite giving up the goal
less than a minute into the
second stanza, the Wolver-
ines didn't lose anyenergy.
Even with far more scoring
chances than Michigan State
at that point, Michigan could
not find the back of the net.
It was Michigan State's
continuous march to the pen-
alty box that helped Michigan
come back.
It appeared Michigan
would get on the board when
it got a power play midway
through the second period.
Multiple times during the
man-advantage situation, the
Wolverines were poised to
beat Lerg but couldn't finish
the job.
When the power play
ended, Hensick swung his
stick at the puck in frustra-
tion as it sailed through the
air. Fittingly, he whiffed.
But Michigan State seemed
intent on giving Michigan
chances to tie the score. Just
seconds after his team killed
off one penalty, Spartan
forward Tim Crowder was
called for high sticking.
And the Michigan power
play finally finished the job
it started during its previous
Hensick sent a cross-ice
pass to Porter who one-timed
the puck past the diminutive
Lerg to tie the score at one.
This article originally
ran on Nov. 22, 2006.

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