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March 25, 2013 - Image 12

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The Michigan Daily, 2013-03-25

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4B - March 25, 2013

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Disappointing end
to season at NCAAs

Senior forward Rachel Sheffer celebrates as the Wolverines advance past Villanova in the NCAA Tournament opener.
Blue wins firstNCAA
tourney game sine'01

It w
tion ft
for M
out ai
goal w
had t
but he
the fit

or second time Of the seven Michigan wrestlers
competing, only three made it
since 1991, no out of the first round, and only
estler earns All- Massa advanced to the quarter-
e~tle earn All~finals.
merican status Forperspective onhowdisap-
pointing this was for the team,
nine Big Ten teams finished
By MAX COHEN ahead of the Wolverines in the
Daily Sports Writer final standings for the weekend.
"It's hard sometimes as a
vas only fitting that a frus- coach to put your finger on what
g season ended in frustra- exactly went wrong because
or the Michigan wrestling you're frustrated," said Michi-
at the NCAA Champion- gan coach Joe McFarland.
in Des Moines, Iowa. Massa, seeded 12th in the
onlythe second time since 165-pound weight class, won a
no Wolverine wrestler 7-5 decision over North Dakota
d All-American status by State's No. 5 Steven Monk in the
ing in the top eight of his second round on Friday evening.
t class. One-hundred-and- Massa used an early lead to fend
five-pound freshman Tay- to his advantage, spending the
assa was the only wrestler third period preventing Monk
nade it to the round of 12 to from turning him for the take-
a chance to qualify. With- down.
ny wrestlers placing and In the quarterfinals, Massa
rous early exits, Michigan lost a 3-1 decision to Oklahoma
ed 33rd in the tournament. State's No. 4 Tyler Caldwell. A
e walked out with no All first-period takedown allowed
icans, and that's not the Caldwell to take the early lead,
ve set at all," Massa said. and Massa failed to counter to
e Wolverine coaching staff win the match. In his first round
hought its wrestlers had of consolations, with an oppor-
rounding into form after tunity to place still possible,
ing sixth in the Big Ten Massa was dominated by Iowa
pionships two weeks ago, State's Michael Moreno, who
opes of NCAA Champion- earned a 17-2 technical fall.
success were put to rest on "I just have to use it as a
rst day of the tournament. learning experience and get

ready so hopefully I can win
three national titles with my
last three years," Massa said.
Many of the other Wolver-
ines who had the potential to
make deep runs faltered early
on. One-hundred-and-seventy-
four-pound redshirt junior Dan
Yates was seeded 10th, yet fell
in the first round of the tourna-
ment to Iowa State's unseeded
Tanner Weatherman, 6-4. Yates
failed to wrestle his way back
into contention in the wres-
tlebacks, finishing with a 2-2
Redshirt junior Eric Grajales,
seeded 12th in the 149-pound
weight class continued his late-
season struggles, losing in the
second round of the tourna-
ment to Columbia's No. 5 Steve
Santos. After an undefeated Big
Ten regular season, Grajales has
struggled in the postseason, fin-
ishing2-2 in the NCAA Champi-
onships and just seventh in the
Big Ten Championships.
At the end of the season,
Michigan can only look forward
to next year. All of its starters
except 285-pound fifth-year
senior Ben Apland will be back
and will be joined by an elite
recruiting class. Still, the Wol-
verine coaching staff knows it
will have to make vast improve-
ments to ensure that season will
not be full of disappointment.

Daily Sports Writer
In a season filled with accom-
plishments, the Michigan wom-
en's basketball team added a new
highlight to put atop its resume
on Sunday night. For the first
time since 2001, the Wolverines
won a game in the NCAA Tour-
nament and now find themselves
matched up against lethal No. 1
seed Stanford.
In a 60-52 win over Villanova
(9-7 Big East, 21-11 overall), it was
clear Mich-_
igan came VILLANOVA 52
out erratic MICHIGAN 60
and excited,
struggling to finish on several
early shots in the paint while
starting out shooting 4-for-14.
The Wolverines' defense held
down the fort, grabbing a 13-10
lead and forcing three early
Wildcat turnovers before senior
guard Jenny Ryan scored nine
straight points for Michigan (9-7
Big Ten, 22-10) to build a seven-
point lead.
"I thought we did a great
job. offensively on them, and I
thought we did a great job of
getting (Laura) Sweeney in foul
trouble and obviously that was a
key to the game," said Michigan
coach Kim Barnes Arico. "She
scored their first seven points.
They worewus down a littleabit
late, but we were really able
to take advantage of their size
inside. I thought (senior center)
Rachel (Sheffer) was tremen-
"It came down to the end, and
we're happy to be playing one
more day."
Villanova, which is seventh in
the country with 8.3 3-pointers
per game, came out flat beyond
the arc, starting 1-for-8. The
Wildcats went into halftime hav-
ing hit only three 3-pointers, but
besides a nine-point run from
Ryan, the Wolverines had a slop-
py first half offensively. Michi-
gan went into halftime with six

turnovers, while Villanova had
four of its own, and both teams
hit under 40 percent of their
"I think just keeping our com-
posure was huge," Ryan said.
"Even if they got the lead, I was
feeling good about our team,
especially the way we were talk-
ing to each other in the huddle.
Obviously any time a team does
get a lead, it's abit demoralizing,
but what we talked about the
whole time is that if they score
we need to score, and just need
to get one stop at a time."
Clinging to their two-point
lead, the Wolverines came out
strong behind Sheffer's layup
that sparked a 9-0 run to stretch
their lead to nine. Sheffer ended
the game with 16 points and
matched her career-high 13
"Even if they
got the lead, I
was feeling good
about our team."
Five straight points from Vil-
lanova cut Michigan's momen-
tum, but senior forwardRate
Thompson drilled a 3-pointer
with 12:43 remaining to bring
the Wolverines' lead backto five.
Thompson ended the game with
a team-high 17 points and six
"I think the momentum
change was really big for us,"
Sheffer said. "Whenever Kate
hits a three, it's always a huge
momentum change because it's
usually a great shot, so I think it
just really set us off to keep the
energy going for us."
After back and forth from both
teams, the Wildcats' sophomore
forward Lauren Burford had the

opportunity for a four-point play
to tie the game, but missed the
free throw with 7:56 remaining.
"We knew they were going to
make runs, and we knew they
were going to score," Ryan said.
"(But) we just tried to stick to
our runs and what we practiced
all week."
Michigan responded with a
three-point play from Sheffer,
pulling its lead back to four. With
4:24 left in the contest,fVillanova
came out of a timeout commit-
ting a huge turnover that result-
ed in Thompson's third 3-pointer
of the game.
A strong run to follow sealed
the Wolverines' win, bringing
their largest lead of the game
to 10. Michigan committed 14
turnovers, but outrebounded the
Wildcats, 36-25.
"I think we knew going into
the game the style that they
have," Sheffer said. "They do
shoot a lot of threes, so we had
to take advantage of crashing the
boards and getting out in transi-
tion. I think I had a double-dou-
ble (tonight), but I was just in the
right place at the right time for a
lot of those rebounds."
Ryan ended the game with
13 points and three assists, and
senior forward Nya Jordan also
played a critical role, adding 12
points and nine rebounds. The
Wolverines found success from
the foul line too, going 11-for-13
from the charity stripe.
The most glaring weakness for
Michigan this season has been its
bench, which was held scoreless
on Sunday. Michigan will need
to find some form of production
from its bench to compete with
Stanford on Tuesday night.
"We need our seniors to carry
us in the end," Ryan said. "We
have Kate Thompson on our
team who can light it up, and we
have Rachel and Sam Arnold and
"I just think we kept our com-
posure really well tonight, and
we can do it (again)."

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