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February 22, 2008 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 2008-02-22

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8A - Friday, February 22, 2008T ih d

The Michigan Daily - michiganclaily.com

MINNESOTA 69, MICHIGAN 60
LETDOWN

Phillips dominates in paint
as Blue doubles up Purdue

By ALEX PROSPERI
Daily Sports Writer
Michigan coach Kevin Borseth,
known for his fire on the sidelines,
did something out of the ordinary
last night.
He sat
down. PURDUE 36
With MICHIGAN 72
four min-
utes remaining against Purdue,
the always-pacing Borseth took a
seat between his assistant coach-
es. Thanks to his team's stifling
defensive effort, Borseth got to
watch the final few minutes from
the bench as the Wolverines shut
down the Boilermakers, 72-36.
It was Michigan's second big-
gest margin of victory this season.
The Wolverines beat Belmont by
37 on Nov. 25.
"It's not easy to sit down inthese
games," Borseth said. "Every game
has just been tooth-and-nail. To be
able to sit down in a game like this
and kind of enjoy the last couple
minutes, it's relaxing."
Michigan (8-7 Big Ten, 15-10
overall)set the defensivetone early.
Purdue didn't score for almost the
first five minutes and followed that
drought with an eight-minute one.
Michigan scored 17 points off Pur-
due's 12 first-half turnovers to take
the advantage.
"We came out to play today,"
sophomore center Krista Phillips
said. "We were set on winning this
game."
To take down Purdue, who sat
two and a half games ahead of
Michigan in the conference stand-
ings going into last night's contest,
the Wolverines needed to play bet-
ter than they did in West Lafayette
on Jan. 10 when they lost to the
Boilermakers, 56-51.
One of Michigan's goals was
to come out more aggressive and
attack the basket.
When they last played Purdue
(10-6, 14-13), the Wolverines shot
just two free throws. Last night,
they reached the charity stripe 19
times.
"We felt that we had to get it

Sophomore Krista Phillips poured in a game-high 15 points and displayed some
grace in the post during the Wolverines' 72-36 blowout of Purdue.

APPHOTO
Freshman Manny Harris was stifled after halftime. He was held to just four points and committed three turnovers after the
break. Michigan coach John Beilein benched Harris for the last four minutes of last night's 69-60 loss to Minnesota.
Once again,'M'can't close

around the basket more rather
than just bombing things up from
the arc," Borseth said. "We really
put a focus on trying to play the
game around the rim a little bit
more."
Phillips was the key to Michi-
gan's second-highest scoring out-
put this season. The sophomore,
who finished 7-for-12 from the
field with eight rebounds, abused
Purdue's weak post defense.
With her back to the basket
early in the second half, Phillips
faked one way, went the other and
gracefully used the backboard to
bank in two of her game-high 15
points.
Michigan played its best game
of the year last night, but it wasn't
without Purdue's help. The Boil-
ermakers missed numerous wide-
open jumpers and plenty of layups
on their way to shooting just 26
percent from the field - the worst
shooting performance by a Michi-
gan opponent this season.
"Defensively, we did a great job
coming together," Phillips said.

"And when we play good defense,
it leads to good offense for us."
The Wolverines dominated the
glass, outrebounding the Boiler-
makers by 14. Their ability to limit
Purdue's second-chance points
was crucial, as Purdue missed sev-
eral shots in the paint.
"They shoved us under the rim
last game," junior Ashley Jones
said. "So, we made an effort to box
out and rebound a little bit harder
this game."
With under 10 seconds left,
Michigan secured the last of its 45
rebounds and seldom-used senior
captain Katie Dierdorf took off
down the court. She received a
pass and capitalized with a layup.
The basket marked the first time
all season the Wolverines doubled
their opponent's score.
Michigan now has much-need-
ed momentum heading into its
final road game of the year against
Illinois on Sunday.
"It's a really good feeling," Jones
said. "I'll probably go to sleep with
a smile on my face tonight."

By MARK GIANNOTTO
Daily SportsEditor
MINNEAPOLIS - Maybe next
season, after the Michigan men's
basketball team has had more time
to reflect on what went wrong this
year, it will be able to take better
advantage ofopportunities like last
night.
Holding onto a lead midway1
through the second half, the Wol-
verines watched it all disintegrate
thanks to awful shooting, eventu-
ally falling 69-60 to Minnesota at
Williams Arena. Michigan shot
a dreadful 26.3 percent from the
field after halftime, and saw its
three-game winning streak come
to an end.
It would be one thing if the hor-
rendous accuracy were due to some
sort of defensive adjustment by the
Gophers. But in the locker room
afterwards, Wolverine players
were well aware where the blame
should fall.
"We missed some open shots,"
sophomore DeShawn Sims said.
"They didn't really do anything to
us.",
With just over 14 minutes
remaining in the game, Michigan
(4-10 Big Ten, 8-18 overall) took its
largest lead, 49-44, courtesy of a
tip in from sophomore Ekpe Udoh.
From there, Michigan mustered
just two field goals over the next
13 minutes. By the time the scoring

malaise was complete, Minnesota
(6-7, 16-9) had taken an 11-point
lead, and the contest was essen-
tially finished.
After combining for 49 points
against Ohio State last Sunday,
Sims and freshman Manny Har-
ris were held scoreless for the final
15 minutes of the game. Michigan
coach John Beilein even benched
Harris for the last four minutes of
the game, just three days after the
Detroit native was named Big Ten
Player of the Week.
"He's better than that," said
Beilein of Harris's four-point,
three-turnover performance after
halftime. "He's so much better
than that."
It didn't help .that the Wolver-
ines continued to shoot often and
inaccurately from 3-point range.
The team finished 5-for-26 beyond
the arc, including an ugly 2-for-16
in the second half
Minnesota guard Lawrence
McKenzie was on the other end of
the spectrum. The senior scored
a career-high 26 points, thanks
to seven 3-pointers. None were
more important or impressive
than a seemingly impossible fade-
away with less than seven minutes
remaining as the shot clock expired
and his team clung to a three-point
lead.
As a whole, the Gophers made
more than 40 percent of their long-
range shots, including their first

four of the game to take an early
15-Slead.
But Michigan responded from
the early surge, going on its own
14-4 run to square things up at 19.
The Wolverines took a one-point
lead into halftime thanks largely
to the play of Harris and Sims.
The duo combined for 23 first-half
points and helped to quiet a rau-
cous crowd.
Then the all-too-familiar scor-
ing drought reared its ugly head.
Harris and Sims put up just nine
points in the second half, and the
team suffered accordingly, scoring
just 25 total in the final 20 min-
utes.
It's all the more disturbing con-
sidering Michigan's recent win
streak was due in large part to
its ability to hit the open shots it
hadn't been making much of the
season.
Old habits, like losing seasons,
are hard to break.
"Wehadsomereallygoodlooks,"
Beilein said. "Some really, really
good looks. ... But we got back to
our old self."
NOTES: After emerging as the
team's much-needed third scorer,
sophomore Anthony Wright was
held to just two points on 1-of-7
shooting. The redshirt freshman
started the second half in place of
senior Ron Coleman. ... The Wol-
verines had 23 offensive rebounds
and outboarded Minnesota, 42-36.

Turnbull gets shot with top line

By COURTNEY RATKOWIAK
Daily Sports Editor
Ever since Travis Turnbull
broke an 82-minute scoreless tie
to give Michigan the Great Lakes
Invitational title
in December, M
he's been playing Michigan at
his best hockey Mich. State
of the season. Matchup.
The Wolver- Mich. 25-3-4;
ines could have Mich. State
used his clutch 20-8-5
goal the last When:
time they played Tonight 8 P.M.
Michigan State. Where' Mann
During a 1-0 Ice Arena
loss and 2-2 tie in
January, Mich- TV/Radio:
igan's potent CSTV
offense couldn't
score under pressure.
But against the Spartans this
weekend, Turnbull will replace
injured senior forward Chad
Kolarik and play on the Wolver-
ines' first line for the first time this
year. Without Kolarik, their sec-
ond-highest scorer, the Wolverines
will need Turnbull and others to
step up on offense.
Kolarik will be sidelined for four
to five weeks after suffering a ham-
string injury against Lake Superior
State last Saturday, a day after he

and Kevin Porter became the first
teammates in the country to reach
40 points each.
Turnbull, who has recently
played on the third line, boasts
the team's third-highest goal total
(behind Porter and Kolarik) with
12.HalfofTurnbull's22 pointshave
come in the 12 games after the GLI,
and his performance has earned
him the opportunity to replace
Kolarik in Michigan's final series
against a CCHA frontrunner.
"Obviously, it was nice to score
that goal, but I haven't really put
that in perspective at all, really,"
Turnbull said.
But Michigan coach Red Beren-
son described the goal as the turn-
ing point of the junior forward's
year and said Turnbull's play is "a
good combination of experience
and confidence" that will work
well on the first line. The last time
Turnbull played on the top line,
in last year's series against Notre
Dame, he tallied four points in his
strongest weekend of the 2006-07
season.
In practice this'week, the Wol-
verines have worked on replacing
Kolarik with Turnbull on special
teams. Last month, all three of the
Spartans' goals against Michigan
were on the power play - a shock-
ing statistic for the 10th-ranked

Michigan penalty kill.
Freshman Matt Rust, a staple on
the penalty kill, said the Wolver-
ineshad trouble last month because
they underestimated Michigan
State's ability to move the puck
with the man advantage.
"They're one of those teams
where they don't really stick to a
structured power play - they try
and switch it up, and they're really
creative," Rust said. "There's really
nothing you can do. You can watch
endless amounts of film, but when
it comes down to game time, you
have to be ready for whatever they
throw at you."
If Michigan can stifle the Spar-
tans' power-play unit while creat-
ing scoring chances of its own, it
could possibly clinch the CCHA
regular-season title this weekend.
Michigan State has lost three of
its last six. The Wolverines haven't
won at Munn Ice Arena since the
2004-05 season, and half of their
40-point duo will be wearing street
clothes at the game.
Regardless, it's Michigan vs.
Michigan State - which means
there are never excuses for poor
play.
"They brought back 20 return-
ing players from a national cham-
pionship team," Berenson said. "On
paper, they're the team to beat."

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