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March 24, 2008 - Image 9

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The Michigan Daily, 2008-03-24

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U The Michigan Daily I michigandaily.com I March 24,2008

2008 CCHA PLAYOFFS FINAL FOUR
MICHIGAN 6, NORTHERN MICHIGAN 4. 9-MICHIGAN 2, MIAMI (OHIO) 1

- Mvs.

ns o the 1h

The Michigan hockey team celebrates its first CC HA tournament championship since 2005.
C m
~.O-KLEONr

ANOTHER FOR THE RAFTERS

GRITTY MILLER WINS MVP NEXT UP: NIAGAR
'M' prepares for Niagara

A AT REGIONALS

The team, the team,...4

DETROIT -
T he team.
It was Bo Schembechler's philosophy,
but this year's Michigan hockey team
embodies that mentality
better than any maize
and blue squad - in
any sport - in recent
memory.
The Wolverines have
already accomplished
four of the five goals they
set out for themselves
at the beginning of the NATE
season: SANDALS
College Hockey Show-
case champions.
Great Lakes Invitational champions.
CCHA regular-season champions.

CCHA playoff champions.
This year's Michigan team has been suc-
cessful because it's just that: a team.
The Wolverines have accomplished
their goals by playing as a unit and sticking
together.
"It's been one of those teams that when
they've made up their mind thatthey're
going to do something, they've been able to
do it," Michigan coach Red Berenson said.
"I've had a lot of teams come up with the
same goals, but they're lucky to accomplish
any of them or many of them. But this team
has found away to do it."
They've proven they can win high-scor-
ing games, like the 6-4 win against Northern
Michigan in Friday night's semifinal.
They've proven they can win in a low-
See SANDALS, Page 4B

ByANDY REID
Daily Sports Writer
When raucous cheering could be heard
through the walls of the locker room yester-
day morning, it was clear that the Michigan
hockey team's weekend couldn't have gone
much better.
On Saturday night, the Wolverines hoisted
the Mason Cup, given to the winner of the
CCHA playoffs, for the first time since 2005
after shutting down the nation's top-ranked
offense, Miami (Ohio).
Just over 12 hours later, the players gath-
ered in their locker room to await their
NCAA Tournament fate and watch ESPN2's
tournament selection show. Within the first
five minutes of the broadcast, Michigan was
announced as the No.1 overall seed, resulting

in the wild cheering from the team.
The Wolverines drew 16th-seeded Niagara
(22-10-4), the automatic bid from the College
Hockey America conference, inthe four-team
East Regional.
Clarkson (21-12-4), an at-large team from
the Eastern College Athletic Conference, and
St. Cloud State (19-15-5), a Western College
Hockey Association team that swept tour-
nament-bound Wisconsin in its conference
tournament, are their two other teams in the
regional.
The first-round matchup with the Purple
Eagles comes as a pleasant surprise for Mich-
igan after the Wolverines drew tournament-
tested North Dakota in the first game the past
two seasons.
"We're where we wanted to be," senior
See REGIONALS, Page 6B

ALBANY: YOUR MOM
WANTS YOU TO GO
Don't miss outon your chance to
purchase tickets for this weekend
The Michigan Athletics Ticket Office
will have tickets for the East Regional
available today only from 8:30 a.m. to
5 p.m. All-session tickets are $82, and
there is a four-ticket limit per person.
Purchases can be made in person at
the ticket office or over the phone
by calling (734)764-0247. Tickets
are also availableothrough the Times
Union Center (800-30-EVENT)
or through TicketMaster (www.
ticketmaster.com). Tickets can be
picked up at the Times Union Center
in Albany.
MORE INSIDE
Junior Tim Miller shines, PAGE 3B

Brunemann swims to national title

Junior's title
concludes perfect
season in the mile
By RUTH LINCOLN
Daily Sports Writer
COLUMBUS - A 66-length
race couldn't have been any
closer.
After the first 500 yards of
the 1,650-yard freestyle, Michi-
gan junior Emily Brunemann

led North Carolina's Whitney
Sprague by two-hundredths
of a second. After jumping off
the blocks, Brunemann held a
narrow lead and looked deter-
mined to cap off an undefeated
season in the mile and earn her
first national title at the NCAA
Swimming and Diving Cham-
pionships.
Swimmingstroke-for-stroke,
the two top milers in the coun-
try gave the crowded McCorkle
Aquatic Pavilion a horserace.
Sprague edged Brunemann
after the 500-yard mark, but

with a tight flip turn at 800
yards, Brunemann took a lead
she never relinquished.
Brunemann touched the
wall (15:53:69) more than four
seconds ahead of Sprague to
claim her first-career national
title. She is the first Wolverine
ever to win a distance national
title and the first since 1995.
"It's what I've worked for
all year, and it's been my main
goal,"Brunemann said."It came
down to gut, and it's always
good to have someone there to
race and especially Whitney

because I've raced against her
so many times. She's such a
great competitor."
After pumpingher fist in cel-
ebration and smiling from ear
to ear,Brunemannreached over
the lane divider to congratulate
Sprague. The two embraced as
Brunemann gave Sprague a tap
on her Tar Heel-blue swim cap.
"She is everything that you
want in a national champion,"
Michigan coach Jim Rich-
ardson said. "Incredible work
ethic, and she brings her best
See NCAAS, Page 4B

Junior Emily Brunemann won the 1,650-yard freestyle at this weekend's NCAA Championships.

I

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