2B - Monday, March 29, 2010
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com Aft
2B - Monday, March 29, 2010 The Michigan Daily - michigandailycom
n the way to
Viefhaus's homers propel Blue
EN ROUTE TO FORT WAYNE,
ravel notes. Deep in the
heart of middle America.
Nothing but endless fields
and, well, that's about it.
Just hoping the battery in my
computer lasts long enough to find
some truck stop with a Wi-Fi con-
nection (hopefully those exist) so
I can send this
before the puck
late last night
to make this
work be ANDY
damned (sorry REID
is Michigan vs.
Miami (Ohio) for a chance to play
in the national semifinals, and, per
my civic duty as a senior at the 'U,'
I'm throwing caution to the wind
and speeding to some ice rink in
By the time you're reading this
column, we'll all know whether my
spontaneous jaunt to the middle of
nowhere will have been worth the
trip or not. But win or lose (hope-
fully the former, but even a loss
in the second round of the NCAA
Tournament is, at this point, a
miracle, considering where this
team was three weeks ago), I can't
pass up this opportunity.
It certainly helps that my dad
volunteered to pay for this excur-
sion, but that's what college is all
about, right? Begging your parents
I fully plan on being with Mich-
igan in Detroit in two weeks, if the
Wolverines make it there, but I
just couldn't resist being a part of
the most unexpected, exciting run
in Michigan hockey history.
And, who doesn't like the
chance to yell the "Ugly Words"
chant - as Carl Hagelin put it dur-
ing his freshman year - in a for-
eign rink? And heckling Rico Blasi
is a true passion of mine.
All I know right now is this:
last night, I got home from a long,
strenuous day of work, and it
wasn't a nice, hot meal or a tall,
strong drink that helped me relax.
It was getting home just in time to
see Louie Caporusso net the Wol-
verines' second of five goals in the
first round of the NCAA hockey
The hockey team's little run
- by far the most exciting thing
that's happened in Michigan
sports in a long, long time - has
got me enthralled with the sport.
Screw March Madness; this is way
And I know at least a small
contingent of Michigan fans agree
with me. And that's not counting
the kid in a penguin suit and the
guy with a Viking helmet that the
CBS Sports cameramen couldn't
pry their lenses away from during
the Bemidji State game. Saturday
night, I yelled many a "Go Blue" to
bar-hoppers along South Univer-
sity Ave. who were sporting Michi-
gan hockey jerseys (or sweaters,
That's just not Michigan appar-
el that you see very often, unless
you're at Yost for a game. It's great
to see people getting swept up in
Full disclosure: I'm not a huge
hockey fan. Somewhere, though
I grew up around the sport, I
never developed that Midwestern
appreciation for the game. But, in
complete honesty, I've only been
this excited for a sporting event
in my four years as a student very
All of the drama of the lacklus-
ter regular season and the CCHA
Tournament run and Red Beren-
son's ever-growing legacy just has
me totally geeked for this game.
Let's just hope, when stacks of
this paper hit Angell Hall tomor-
row morning, we'll all still have
some hockey to look forward to.
- Reid really wants to spend
a weekend in the RenCen in
downtown Detroit. He can be
reached at email@example.com.
By CASANDRA PAGNI
Daily Sports Writer
To kick off Big Ten Conference
play, the third-ranked Wolverines
beat No.20 Illinois in a decisive 7-1
contest at home on Saturday. Sun-
day's game was cancelled due to
weather, so Michigan enters next
weekend's contest against Wis-
consin with an unblemished Big
Illinois's roster promised an
explosive offense - three hitters
batting over .400 - but starting
pitcher Jordan Taylor proved she
was up to the challenge. The junior
hurler fanned 11 Fighting Illini
batters through seven innings of
work, while walking just one.
Taylor had both command and
control of all her pitches on Sat-
urday, holding Illinois to just one
earned run on five hits. The Wol-
verines used their one-pitch, one-
play focus to stop the Fighting
Illini from rallying back.
"Our philosophy is we just
throw our pitch," Michigan coach
Carol Hutchins said. "I believe our
best pitch can beat most hitters.
Good hitting teams like (Illinois)
are going to get some hits and get
some runs, but we need to hold home runs so far.
them down. Our pitchers' job is "I haven't really been hitting
to keep us in the game until our that great lately," Viefhaus said.
offense can win it." "I just went out there with the
The offense continued to be mentality of see the ball, hit the
hot at Alumni Field, as the Wol- ball and be aggressive at the plate.
verines backed up Taylor's effort That's what I did today."
Hutchins praised Viefhaus's
efforts, noting that with confer-
ence play underway, it was good
"M aggie works- time for her bat to heat up.a
v yhardand "You like to see your seniors
have their best year," Hutchins
she's a great said. "(Viefhaus has) been hav-
ing a great year. She's been a little
player " cool lately, so it was nice to see her
break out a little bit. Some hitters
will be on their game and some
won't be. The key is that we don't
have them all off their game at
with seven runs of their own. The once, and it's always great when
hitters went a combined 10-for- they're all on their game at once.
28 with three home runs and Maggie works really hard, -and
two doubles in Saturday's game, she's a great player."
headlined by two home runs from Viefhaus has found success
senior Maggie Viefhaus and one at home, going 3-for-7 with five
from junior Dorian Shaw. RBI since opening play at home
The co-captain Viefhaus took on Wednesday against Bowling
two different Illinois pitchers' Green.
deep, finishing 2-for-4 with three Against Illinois, Shaw went
RBI. Saturday was the third base- 2-for-3, as did senior centerfielder
man's first multi-home run game Molly Bausher. Michigan's sus-
of her career, giving her 30 career tained offensive attack eventually
put the game out of reach.
"It's big to get on the board
first," Hutchins said. "It puts
pressure on the other team. But
you've seen us, a number of times,
get behind and come back -- any
team is capable of that. So, you
still have to stay in your moment.
(Taylor) has the command the
game, and the offense has to keep
coming at them."
After spending the first month
of the season on the road, the
Wolverines will enjoy their week
at home before taking on Wiscon-
sin at Alumni Field next weekend.
The win over Illinois gives the
Wolverines mompentum heading
into next weekend's conference
"We don't really prepare any
differently (for a conference
game)," Viefhaus said. "We have
to treat it the same as any other
game. It was very refreshing to
get (conference play) started
and come out together like that;
everyone did really well. It was
very refreshing to beat them like
we did. It shows that we can beat
anybody. Hutch teaches us to play
one-pitch softball, and that's what
Michigan blows out Big Ten opponents
By EMILY BONCHI
Daily Sports Writer
The Michigan men's tennis team
had a near-perfect weekend against
Iowa and Minnesota.
The sixth-ranked Wolverines
(3-0 Big Ten, 13-3 overall) first took
on No. 18 Iowa (0-2, 10-3) Saturday
afternoon, defeating the Hawkeyes
6-1, the team's sixth victory this
season against a top-25 team. On
Sunday, the Wolverines expanded
their winning streak to seven after
they swept Minnesota (2-1, 9-7) 7-0.
Against Iowa, Michigan swept
all three doubles matches for the
fifth time this season, with juniors
Whitney Taney and Rika Tatsuno
defeating the 23rd-ranked duo
Sonja Molnar and Merel Beelen 8-2
at No.1 doubles to clinch the point.
"Iowa is a really solid team and
they came in pretty confident too,"
Michigan coach Ronni Bernstein
said. "It definitely helps us to get a
6-1 over a team as good as them."
On Saturday, Taney, the team's
captain, won her sixth dual match
in a row - her twelfth of the sea-
son - moving up to No. 2 singles for
the first time this season. She had
a come from behind win against
Lynne Poggensee-Wei 4-6, 6-1, 6-0.
Taney was one of the three Wol-
verines to clinch their match after
having to go into a third set.
"We won three out of four third
sets and a couple of them were 6-0,"
Bernstein said. "It shows we're
competing hard, and I think that's
what this team does."
Michigan won all the singles
matches, except at No. 5, giving the
Wolverines their sixth win in a row
"Obviously taking wins is what
we want," Taney said. "We use it
as momentum going into our next
The team's second match this
weekend, played against Minneso-
ta on Sunday, was especially impor-
tant to Taney, who is originally
from outside Minneapolis.
"It's really fun (to returnhome),"
Taney said. "I'll have friends and
family there and I've played on
these courts so it's definitely great
to be back in Minnesota."
With her friends and family in
attendance, Taney earned her sec-
ond win at No. 2 singles, defeating
Tijana Kaprivica 6-2, 6-2.
Freshman Mimi Nguyen won
her fourteenth match this season,
and her eighth in a row, earning the
first singles point for the Wolver-
ines at No. 4. Senior Tania Mahtani
clinched the match for Michigan
at No. 5, deafeating Jackie Sperling
After this weekend, Bernstein
is now 21-2 against Big Ten oppo-
nents. The only team she's been
unable to beat is Northwestern -
the dominant program in the con-
ference which has won the last 11
Big Ten Championships.
The Wolverines look to end that
as they travel to Combe Tennis
Center to play No. 2 Northwestern
this Saturday. Despite the team's
recentsuccess, Michigan is not tak-
ing anything for granted.
"Nobody takes it easy," Bern-
stein said. "And that's expected of
everyone on the team."
Defense sparks tournament win
By JAMES BLUM verines' first game against Cal
Daily Sports Writer State East Bay, Adamson cata-
lyzed several golden offensive
The two-team expansion was opportunities on the counterat-
not enough to keep the Michigan tack. Her 10 saves led to several
water polo team from dominating Wolverine breakaways and she
the six-team Fluid Four tourna- tallied five assists.
ment. The eighth-ranked Wolver- With both opening day rivals
ines (10-0 CWPA, 18-6 overall) employing the "drop" - a defen-
continued their undefeated sea- sive strategy designed to force
son against conference teams outside shooting by taking away
thanks to balanced play. the inside game - the Wolverines
With redshirt senior goalie had tobe especially aggressive on
Brittany May again out with offense.
a shoulder injury, the Wolver- The drop is designed to force
ines focused on defense. And it outside shooting by taking away
showed. the inside game. Essentially
Behind the goaltending of Mor- guarding the interior pass and
gan Turner and Alex Adamson, double-teaming the two-meter
Michigan held Saturday oppo- player.
nents Wagner and Cal State East But while Michigan contested
Bay to a total of five goals in Indi- the drop in its first two games,
anapolis. the Wolverines struggled against
"We played extremely well Gannon on Sunday, giving up a 2-1
against Cal State East Bay who lead early.
up until this week was ranked in "Saturday both Cal State East
the top twenty all season," coach Bay and Wagner were dropping
Matt Anderson said. "Adamson on us and we were shooting very
played very well. We were aggres- well," Anderson said. "Today
sive and hard-pressed in the first Gannon was dropping on us in the
game and it showed." first half and we weren't shooting
Michigan's smothering defense very well. Against Cal State we
and solid goaltending sparked a were 16 of 26 shooting, which is
high-octane offense. In the Wol- amazing. Today we were 11 for 39
so you can see the difference. It's
the same as in basketball. If you
watched West Virginia last night,
Kentucky could not make an out-
side shot. That's how we were this
It took a comeback and a little
fourth-period magic, but Michi-
gan was able to eke out a win over
the Golden Knights. After falling
behind, the Wolverine bench was
able to tie the game at five with
one period to play.
With the game tied, Anderson
put in the starting line, which
pulled away from Gannon, scor-
ing six more to close out an 11-7
With the Fluid Four behind
them, all eyes turn toward the
April 3 matchup against No. 16
Indiana at the Canham Natato-
rium. It will be the first televised
collegiate water polo game for the
"Next weekend is going to be
exciting," Anderson said. "We're
all pumped for next weekend -
its part of the reason you look
forward to the championship part
of the season, so much rides on a
game like that. It's at home, Big
Ten Network, going to be tele-
vised, so we're excited."
Kim, Wolverines disappoint down South
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By MICHAEL WELCH
For the Daily
Riding the confidence from pre-
vious tournaments, everyoneon the
Michigan men'sgolfteam expected
a strong finish in Boca Raton at the
Florida Atlantic University Spring
The Wolverines got exactly the
In the tournament, Michigan
placed sixth out of 16 after main-
taining third place for the first two
"We just closed today with a
terrible round," Michigan coach
Andrew Sapp said.
The first two rounds were far
from what was expected as well.
In the first round, sophomore Matt
Thompson shot an 81. Thompson's
quintuple bogey on the third hole
derailed a consistent start to the
In the second round,junior Lion
Rim had five birdies and a great
opportunity to bring the Wolver-
ines closer to the scores posted by
Illinois. Unfortunately for Michi-
gan, two double bogeys down land-
ed him a final score of 68 and the
Wolverines trailed far behind the
Playing in the final group on
the last day, the Wolverines suc-
cumbed to the pressure and post-
ed a.nine-over round that caused
them to slip down to sixth place.
None of the Wolverines posted a
score under par and the team fell
from second to sixth after a poor
final five holes.
Coach Sapp hopes this tourna-
ment helps his youngteam learnto
deal with the pressure of the final
"We just have to go out there
and do it in the final round," Sapp
said. "You just hope that you can
go out there when the pressure's
on and take advantage and thrive
Elm said players making aggres-
sive decisions down the stretch
really cost them later on. As a lead-
er on the team, Kim hopes to lead
the younger players heading into
the final tournaments of the year.
"I will make sure that I talk
with them," Kim said. "I will tell
them that in these certain situa-
tions you might want to take the
safe route rather than an aggres-
More than that, both Sapp and
Kim agree that it comes down to
players putting too much pressure
on themselves to perform in tight
And with the Big Ten and
NCAA Championships approach-
ing, the Wolverines expect to use
the Wolfpack Intercollegiate in
two weeks to improve their play in
"Mostly I think these guys just 4
need to be relaxed," Kim said.
"(They should) not put too much
pressure on themselves to per-