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February 16, 2011 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 2011-02-16

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Wednesday, February 16,2011 - 7A

Coming off of poor offensive
game,'M' hosts reeling Hoosiers

Bennett slowly becoming
mainstay on'M' blue line

Daily Sports Writer
Michigan coach Kevin Borseth
was visibly upset after the Michi-
gan women's basketball team lost
to No. 11 Michi-
gan State last Indiana at
Sunday. Michigan
He was frus-
trated by a Spar- Matchup:
tan defense that Indiana 9-16;
wouldn't let the Michigan
Wolverines get
into any sort of When:
rhythm, hold- Wednesday
ing his team 7 P.M.
to one of their Where:
worst offensive Crisler Arena
performances of
the season en route to a 65-59 loss.
"I just thought our offense was
awful," Borseth said. "I thought
our defense did a pretty decent
job under the circumstances,
Luckily for Borseth and Michi-
gan, the Wolverines host the worst
defensive teams in the conference
on Wednesday in Indiana. The
Hoosiers allow almost 68 points
per game, which is worst in the Big
Ten, and Indiana is near the bot-
tom in almost every major defen-
sive category.
Indiana has not wonsince early
January, losing 10 out of its last 11
games. That one victory, though,
came against last-place Illinois.
Still, Borseth doesn't want to over-
look anyone after a loss to base-
ment-dwelling Minnesota two
weeks ago.
"You're going to have to come
out every game and play, it's avery
tough conference," Borseth said
after a game against Ohio State
on Jan. 27. "I don't think anybody
is that much better than anybody
else, or that there is that big of a
separator that you can't come in
one night and not show up with
your best effort."

By MARK BURNS ing his freshman year, Bennett
Daily Sports Editor saw himself on the 20-man ros-
ter, playing a majority of the
Uncle Curt got the ball rolling time with junior Greg Pateryn.
for freshman Mac Bennett, but Twenty games into his fresh-
it's clearly been the Narragan- man year, Bennett has scored
sett, R.I. native who's earned one goal and tallied six assists
himself a steady seat within the through 20 games.
Michigan defensive corps. While the box score can cer-
Curt Bennett - a former tainly tell a lot about a play-
teammate of Michigan hockey er, Powers has seen Bennett
coach Red Berenson on the St. improving with other areas of
Louis Blues in the early 1970s his game, specifically with more
- emailed the Michigan coach- poise and overall on-ice aware-
ing staff about his nephew a few ness.
years ago. At that time, Mac had "Really, the bottom line right
been playing in Rhode Island at now with these young kids
The Hotchkiss School, and Curt is you're starting to see that
thought the Wolverines might increase in confidence," Powers
consider his nephew as a soon- said. "That's what happening
to-be prospect. with Mac ... Now, you're seeing
According to Berenson, assis- a kid who's lugging the puck,
tant coach Billy Powers eventu- using his speed and he's danger-
ally saw Mac play a few times ous now, getting involved with
and made a couple phone calls the play."
to the defensive recruit, with with some moredconfiaence'
Bennett deciding on Michigan and almost a full season under
in early 2008. his belt, Bennett added that
"I didn't know what to he's more comfortable playing
expect," Berenson said of Ben- toward his strengths.
nett's potential. "I think it was For most of the season, he's
hard on the young defenseman competed with sophomore
... The freshmen (don't) get a defenseman Lee Moffie and
chance to play every night, so freshman Kevin Clare for the
that might have slowed their last two defensive positions on
development a little bit. But in any given night. Powers said
the meantime, they realize how that type of situation - in which
important their performance is a player dresses for maybe one
to whether they're in the lineup game on weekends - can "mess
or not." with your mind a little bit."
Through the last five games But as of late, Bennett's been
and eight of the past 10 dur- a regular in the lineup. After

Tuesday's practice, Bennett said
the coaching staff re-evaluates
everyone's positioning on the
team and where they fit into the
lineup following every weekend
series. And since he's not within
the top-four Wolverine defense-
man, Bennett's playing status is
determined on a week-to-week
"So, for at least a guy like me,
I'm not safe," Bennett said. "I
have to make sure that every
game I'm in, I play well. Or else
I could be sitting the next game
or the next weekend."
As Powers said, since Bennett
has a lot of raw offensive talent
and skating ability, working on
the defensive side of the puck is
a part of the game that he needs
to continue to work on - a con-
stant theme for most incoming
freshmen defensemen.
"For the most part, ydefense.
is the toughest position to step
into," Powers said. "You can
hide a little bit as a forward ... I
think he's done a really good job
of growing his game at Michi-
gan and building his hockey
resume as far as being a two-
way defenseman and not just
being askater."
NOTES: Sophomore forward
Chris Brown didn't practice
Monday and Tuesday due to
illness ... Michigan is currently
tied for second in the CCHA
with Miami (Ohio). Both teams
have 49 points.

Michigan coach Kevin Borseth knows every Big Ten team is dangerous.

Michigan is currently in fourth
place in the Big Ten, just three
games out of first. It is right in the
thick of the conference, though,
because there are three teams
within agame of fourth place.
Even though Indiana doesn't
have a great record, they still fea-
ture some talent.,
The Hoosiers are led by a trio
of seniors who average more than
10 points per game, none more
impressive than Jori Davis. The
5-foot-9 guard averages 19 points
in close to 35 minutes per game,
and also leads the team with
almost six rebounds per game. She
is the heart and soul of this Indi-
ana team, and slowing her down
will be key for the Wolverines.
The other two main senior con-
tributors are forward Hope Elam
and guard Whitney Lindsay, who
each average close to 10 points per
game. The issue for Indiana is not
its top-level players but its lack of
The Hoosiers don't have a
bench player who averages even
five points a game, even though
they have 11 players who average
more than 10 minutes a game.

Michigan should be able to exploit
Indiana's lack of a bench by run-
ning its high-energy defense that
forces alot of turnovers and tires
Indiana also isn't a very good
defensive rebounding team, which
will be a huge benefit to the Wol-
verines offense. Indiana is last in
the BigTen in rebounding defense,
which will give the Michigan alot
of second-chance opportunities.
This in turn will help to spread
things out offensively and get its
offense into a rhythm, something
the Wolverines struggled mightily
with against the Spartans.
Michigan's struggles this year
have usually been defensive, but
against Michigan State, it was the
other wayaround. Playing Indiana
could be the Wolverines chance to
right the offensive ship, as they
should be able to take advantage
of the Hoosiers lack of defense.
"What we maybe give up on
the defensive end we try to create
on the offensive end, because you
have got to guard us too," Borseth
said before the season. "No matter
how much we stop them, we have
to score too."

Madwed and Ortiz prove consistent

Daily Sports Writer
In most sports, consistency is
better than flash.
Once in a blue moon, a flashy
performance is good in the short-
run, but over the course of a
grueling season, the consistent
performances from athletes are
more beneficial to the team. And,
in the case of the No. 13 Michi-
gan men's swimming and diving
team, the Wolverines definitely
have those consistent performers.
They admit they have no super-
stars, yet the team has seemingly
dominated its competition in
individual events swum regularly
by just two swimmers - junior
Dan Madwed and sophomore
Miguel Ortiz.
Madwed, who impressed with
his 200-yard freestyle and butter-
fly finishes at the Big Ten Cham-
pionships last year, has found
more success in the 200 fly and
in the shorter 100-yard butterfly,
too. In two instances, Madwed
swept both fly events and went
undefeated in dual-meet competi-
tion in the 200 fly.
"This year, the (200) fly is defi-
nitely my favorite race," Madwed
said after Monday's practice. "It's
kind of like getting back to my
roots. I always was better at 200
fly growing up, so doing well in it
really just feels right."
As much as these performanc-
es can just be seen as consistent
point-earners for the Wolverines,
they also serve as invaluable con-

fidence boosters too, especially in
Madwed's eyes.
"Growing up, I used to just go
out as hard as I could and would
really feel (the pain) coming
home," Madwed said. "Now, I've
learned I really don't necessarily
have to do that, but instead focus
on my stroke and my abilities.
Knowing that and seeing itshow
up in the meets has definitely
given me a ton of confidence
headinginto Big Tens."
For Ortiz, the50- and 100-yard
freestyle have been his bread
and butter throughout the Big
Ten campaign. The sophomore
has garnered a top-three finish
in either the 50- or 100-freestyle
events since Big Ten competition
began in January and has sprin-
kled in impressive finishes in the
100-yard backstroke too.
"(Ortiz) has really been own-
ing the 50- and 100-free events,"
senior captain Chris Douville
said. "He's also stepped up as
a backstroker, too, so it's really
impressive to see where he's come
from since last year."
Combined with the whole
team's recent hot streak, Ortiz
has worn out the podium plat-
form with his recent perfor-
mances. Since Michigan's
conference-opening loss to Indi-
ana, Ortiz has been the firstto the
wall in the two freestyle events
during Big Ten competition and
has made a couple podium visits
for the 100-yard backstroke as
If the individual performances

weren't enough to spark a team,
both Madwed and Ortiz provide
great boosts for the relay teams.
Both tankers swam a leg in the
200-yard freestyle relay at Michi-
gan State, which resulted in a new
pool-record. It was the second
pool record of the day for Ortiz,
as he swam a leg in the 200-yard
medley relay, which also bore a
new pool record.
For Michigan coach Mike Bot-
tomthough, the impressive show-
ings by Madwed and Ortiz are
just precursors to the leadership
shown outside the pool.
"(Madwed) leads this team and
Miguel is our head sprinter - a
guy who has come from pretty
much nowhere in the program
and developed," Bottom said.
"He just projects confidence to
the other guys. I feel good about
having them, definitely, but I feel
even better seeing what they do
for the team."
In the eyes of Douville, the
exciting part has only begun for
the squad.
"It's been really exciting
because we've never really had
many 50 or 100 freestylers or 100
butterfly (swimmers), so to have
the depth to compete in those
events is great," Douville said.
"You know, it'll be interesting to
see what happens and how people
go against these guys come next
week (at Big Tens)."
For these two Wolverines next
week, consistencyiskey. But,then
again, aonce in a blue moon effort
wouldn't hurt either.

The Board or Student Publications
seeks New Members
The University of Michigan Board for Student
Publications is recruiting new members for
three year terms beginning in April.
The Board is responsible for three publications: The
Michigan Daily, the Michiganensian yearbook,
and the Gargoyle.
Because the Board is committed to realizing diversity's
benefits for itself and for the publications it oversees,
the Board is particularly interested in recruiting
members of the University community (faculty, staff
and students) or the general public who are members
of underrepresented groups and who have experience
and expertise in journalism, law, finance or fund
All interested persons are encouraged to apply.
For more information and application forms, please
contact Mark Bealafeld, Student Publications
General Manager at (734) 418-4115 extension 1246 or
The deadline for applications is
Monday, February 14th.

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