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October 06, 2008 - Image 14

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The Michigan Daily, 2008-10-06

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O'lld.c

6B - October 6, 2008

The Michigan Daily - rnichigandaily.com

68 - October 6, 2008 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom

'M' takes a breather
places ninth at invite

By KATHERINE SHER
For the Daily
SOUTH BEND - This week-
end's race might not have been the
most gratifying for the Michigan
men's cross country team, but it
may pay dividends for the rest of
the season. Resting four of its top
six runners, Michigan entered the
25-team race at the Notre Dame
Invitational Friday.
The eight-kilometer race wound
the team through the University of
Notre Dame Golf Course and pro-
vided a generally flat, quick course
for the runners. Florida State won
the meet with a score of 81 while
No. 8 Michigan scored 276, finish-
ingninth.
Though the finish was lower
than expected for the team, Mich-
igan coach Ron Warhurst rested
top runners who were suffering
from minor injuries, mainly aches
and pains.
"I was a little disappointed we

couldn't run everyone we wanted
to today, but that's what happens,"
Warhurst said. "I'm much more
concerned for a few weeks from
now (at the NCAA Pre-National
Invitational) than Iam today."
Redshirt junior captain Bran-
don Fellows led Michigan, fin-
ishing 22nd overall and set a new
personal best time (24:12).
"This race, I just went out pret-
ty good and tried to stay where I
was," Fellows said. "I don't know
if it was because it was a flat course
or what, but it feltgood. (I) got my
confidence back."
Previously, Fellows had been
running in the fifth or sixth spot
for the Wolverines. Friday gave
him a chance to be one of Michi-
gan's top finishers.
And Fellows wasn't the only one
to step up. Redshirt sophomore
Peter Christmas crossed the line
second for Michigan (24:29), fin-
ishing 39th overall.
Freshman Bobby Aprill also ran

well, finishing 42nd (24:30) in his
fourth race of the season.
"We're just taking it easy this
week," Fellows said. "I don't think
(this race) adds any indication to
how we're going to be in the next
few weeks, once we get everyone
back."
Aprill and Christmas filled the
void while redshirt sophomore
Ciaran O'Lionaird and senior Lex
Williams took the race off to rest
up for the upcoming meets.
Warhurst said the Notre Dame
Invitational was a chance to get
ready for the NCAA Pre-National
Invitational on Oct. 18. Pre-Na-
tionals are used to determine a
nine-team regional field, with the
top two teams from each NCAA
Regional qualifying for the nation-
al championship race.
"You still have to get used to
being in a big field," Warhurst said.
"We're ranked eighth in the coun-
try, and I think that's a little over-
ranked until we prove ourselves."

aI
A LLISNGH AMAN/Daly
Fifth-year senior Nicole Edwards paced the Wolverines Friday at the Notre Dame Invitational. She linished 22sd overall.
Kohimejer returns
strong in South Bend

Redshirt junior Brandon Fellows set a new personal-best time (24:12) Friday at Notre Dame Invitational.

By KATIE FIELD done this in so long."
Daily Sports Writer Though she said that she didn't
initially expect to place in the
SOUTH BEND - The scatter- meet, Kohlmeier made an imme-
ing of runners around the finish diate impact on the team's suc-
chute at the Notre Dame Invi- cess.
tational looked like the finish at "She's obviously a tremendous
most cross country meets. Red- talent," Michigan coach Mike
faced and heavily breathing run- McGuire said. "I don't think she
ners with loose ponytails paced would have thought that she'd be
stiffly about, and a few lay on the 11th coming in, but it didn't sur-
ground. prise me. That obviously made
Unlike most of the of runners, our team a lot better."
JEREMY CHO/Daily Michigan fifth-year senior Aly In its best team performance
Kohlmeier stood grinningbroadly of the year, Michigan ran with a
while talking to two friends. She spread of just 49 seconds between
was breathing normally, without its first- and fifth-placed run-
a hint of exertion on her face. If ners. Battling a very strong field,
you hadn't seen her cross the line, fifth-year senior Nicole Edwards
you might have wondered wheth- placed fifth overall to lead the
er she'd run at all. Wolverines (16:40). Rounding out
After missing six months due Michigan's scorers were sopho-
to a fractured tibia, Kohlmeier more Danielle Tauro (17:15), and
returned to action Friday at the redshirt juniors Geena Gall and
Notre Dame Invitational. She Kelly Sampson (17:23 and 17:29).
helped the No. 17 Michigan wom- Michigan will look to tighten
en's cross country team earn a its spread to about 40 seconds
third place finish at the Univer- before the NCAA Pre-Nationals
sity of Notre Dame Golf Course on Oct. 18. This involves keep-
with 136 points. The Wolverines ing the pack together longer, a
finished just 12 points behind No. strategy the team struggled with
7 Princeton, and No. 2 Florida in South Bend. While Pri ceton
State dominated the course with gained positions ahead of the
88 points. Wolverines after the second mile,
Kohlmeier, who nervously took McGuire watched as his Michi-
extra run outs before the starting gan pack splintered.
gun, finished second for Michigan "Some people were getting
and 11th overall (17:00). stuck when other people were
"I was definitely nervous, but making their moves," Tauro said.
a different kind of nervous," "When we'd go around turns,
Kohlmeier said. "I wasn't feeling they'd be boxed in, and there
pressure, but just that I had not would be people throwing their

elbows. It's sometimes hard to get
out and make a move when you
want to."
The large number of runners
on the course made it difficult for
Michigan's top runners to stay
grouped together throughout the
race. The course itself made this
more challenging with its tight
and narrow turns.
"You have to really put yourself
in position at the beginning, when
it's wider and really try to use the
time when you're not surrounded
by people to attack," Tauro said.
Edwards accomplished her
pre-race goal of a top-five fin-
ish, but faced mental challenges
throughout the race.
"I was coming around the last
corner and (McGuire) yelled at
me, 'You can get those two girls
in front of you,' and I just didn't,"
Edwards said. "I think I need to
get mental toughness. That takes
practice, just like running does. I
see where I have to get better."
The fast course provided an
opportunity to get a good five-
kilometer time before the team
begins running six-kilometer
races in the season's remaining
meets.
"There's definitely a differ-
ence between this 5K, which is
especially fast, and goingto Terre
Haute to run the 6K," Edwards
said. "The terrain is just tough-
er. The grass is longer. It's not a
really nicely groomed golf course.
It's meant for cross country. It's
tougher."

a

6
6

Dental student leads soccer
team in fourth year on squad

e

By CHANTEL JENNINGS
For the Daily
For Michigan graduate student
Brent Medema, the door of oppor-
tunity seemed to slam too early on
his college soccer dreams.
But thanks to the Michigan
men's club soccer team, he man-
aged to reach his goals.
He was an all-state player dur-
inghis senior year atPortage High
School in Portage, Mich., and
was recruited by some of the top
schools in the country, including
Michigan and national champion:
ship qualifier St. John's Univer-
sity in New York.
He followed his goal of play-
ing at one of the top schools in the
country by signing with St. John's,
but after a semester, he realized he
wanted to play closer to home.
After transferring to Michigan,
varsity men's soccer coach Steve
Burns, who recruited him a year
before, told Medema he would
need to try out for the. varsity
team.
In the fall of his sophomore
year, he tried out and didn't make
the cut. Devastated, he looked
elsewhere to play and found the,

Michigan men's club soccer team.
"It was a difficult time for me,"
Medema said. "It was hard to
accept playing club soccer when
I knew I was capable of playing at
the Division-I level. But I realized
soccer still needed to be a part of
my life."
Medema led the club team to a
national championship during his
junior year. He scored the game
winner in the title game against
the University of Illinois and was
also named the National Tourna-
ment MVP.
Being the team's center back,
the last line of defense, made the
accomplishment that much sweet-
er. .
Center backs don't normally
score goals - especially not game-
winners.
Suddenly, it seemed as though
the door was still wide open. His
dream was still very much alive
and he was living it.
"When my attitude shifted and
I was able to realize the positive
aspects of the situation, I turned
a down time into three of the best
years of my life," Medema said.
Medema knew his senior year
wouldn't be his last. Being a club

athlete gives students six years
of eligibility, so Medema still had
three years left to play after he
graduated.
When he learned he would be
attending Michigan's School of
Dentistry after his senior year,
Medema decided to juggle gradu-
ate work with athletics.
"It's hard to give it up," Mede-
ma said. " I think I have a unique
opportunity to continue playing
that not a lot of people have, and I
wanted totake advantage of it."
While he can't always attend all
three practices per week on top
of his 40 hours of dental school
classes,his teammates still admire
his dedication.
"People on the team recognize
he has another commitment, but
we still respect him as a leader
on the team even though he's
not there all the time," fifth-year
senior midfielder Brad Murphy
said.
Brent Medema, the Division-I
recruit turned club soccer star,
has turned in a pretty impressive
career so far. Lucky for him and
his teammates, he still has three
more years to open more eyes to
collegiate soccer.

p

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