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March 26, 2013 - Image 8

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The Michigan Daily, 2013-03-26

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8 - Tuesday, March 26, 2013

9

The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Battle cry for big upset:
The game doesn't know

Michigan uses
Carol Hutchins
motto against top-
seeded Stanford
By GLENN MILLER JR.
Daily Sports Writer
The game doesn't know.
At least that's the theory the
Michigan women's basketball
team hopes to prove in what
would be the most substantial
upset in program history.
That's the theory endorsed by
Michigan softball coach Carol
Hutchins,
who has pro- Michigan vs.
vided inspi- Safr
ration for the
women's bas- Matchup:
ketball team Michigan 22-10;
this year. Stanford 32-2
Hutchins, When: Satur-
the all-time day 9:30 p.m.
winningest Where: Maples
coaches at Pavilion
Michigan, TV.
bestowed her ESPN2
29 years of
experience
on the Michigan women's bas-
ketball team earlier this season.
On Sunday, senior guard Jenny
Ryan recalled the most influ-
ential piece of Hutchins' advice
- the opponent may be ranked
higher on paper, but the game
doesn't know that.
The eighth-seeded Wol-
verines will face off. against
top-seeded Stanford on Tues-
day for the chance to make
the program's first Sweet 16
appearance. And if Michigan's
senior-led squad wasn't already
anunderdog, its attemptto upset
one of the nation's best teams
will occur on the Cardinal's
home court, Maples Pavilion.
"We're going to prepare for
Stanford like we would any
game, and we have a lot of con-
fidence in each other to beat any
team in this country," Ryan said.
"The game doesn't know."
The theory worked last
December for Michigan's vol-
leyball team which, in a similar
situation, defeated the second-
ranked Cardinal on its way to
the Final Four.

NICHOLASWILLIAMS/DaIly
SeniorguardJenny Ryan said she has
used inspiration from Michigan softball
coach Carol Hutchins this postseason.
But even if the game truly
doesn't know, Stanford junior
forward Chiney Ogwumike will
make it evident why the Cardi-
nal deserve the top seed in the
Spokane Region. Ogwumike is
one of nation's premier players,
averaging 22.6 points and 12.9
rebounds per game.
If there were a group that
wasn't concerned with rankings
or seeding, it would be the Wol-
verines. First-year coach Kim
Barnes Arico's squad has tended
to play up to its competition this
season, including a win against
then-No. 13 Purdue on the road.
The Wolverines have faced
dominant athletes such as Duke
center Elizabeth Williams and
Penn State guard Maggie Lucas,
though Michigan has yet to
compete against an athlete as
talented as Ogwumike.
Forward Joslyn Tinkle holds
down the interior for Stanford,
averaging 11.6 points per game
alongside Ogwumike.
The Cardinal's backcourt
is dominated by guard Amber
Orrange, who leads the team
with 4.1 assists per game while
chipping in 10.6 points per con-
test.
Michigan can expect Stan-
ford to stray away from the tra-
ditional motion offense while
relying on Orrange to distribute
and play off screens with Ogwu-
mike and Tinkle.
"(On Sunday) they did a lot of
two-man game late in the game,

which really exposed Tulsa,"
Barnes Arico said. "We know
that it's going to be difficult, but
like these kids said, the game
doesn't know."
In their first-round matchup
with Villanova, the Wolverines
benefited from Barnes Arico's
experience against the Wildcats.
Barnes Arico's prior interac-
tion with the Cardinal should
again play a huge role in the
Wolverines' preparation for the
Cardinal. Two years ago, Barnes
Arico's Red Storm was defeated
by Stanford 75-49 in the second
round at Maples.
"I'm sure I'm going to go
through my notes the same
way (as Villanova) tonight to
see what we have done against
Stanford," Barnes Arico said.
"They play the same offense
and do a lot of the same things
that they've traditionally done.
They shoot the ball exception-
ally well."
Stanford's 18-game winning
streak doesn't make Michigan's
task any easier, not to men-
tion the Cardinal's seven-game
unbeaten record at home during
the tournament.
But the Wolverines are a
streaky team that has the weap-
ons to overcome expectations.
"We have (senior guard) Kate
Thompson on our team who can
light it up, and we have (senior
forward) Rachel Sheffer and
(senior guard) Sam Arnold,"
Ryan said. "Ten threes isn't out
of the question for us."
That's no exaggeration. Mich-
igan has lived and died beyond
the arc all season helping the
squad achieve impressive vic-
tories over Michigan State, but
that has also lead to unexpected
losses, such as to Ohio State. If
the Wolverines come out of the
gates with the hot hand shooting
and contain Ogwumike in the
post, they could potentially earn
their way to the Sweet 16.
And if there is any extra
motivation needed to inspire an
upset of one of the best teams in
the nation, an extra day bask-
ing in the Palo Alto sunshine
wouldn't be a bad one.
"I'm not ready to go home,"
said senior forward Nya Jordan.
"We're in California, so I'll stay
here as long as I can."
for arms

Redshirt Junior forward Jordan Morgan was the starter all season but has played just one minute in the tournament.
Hardaway shines while
M-organ disappears

0

By COLLEEN THOMAS
Daily Sports Editor
Contrary to popular belief,
Jordan Morgan is still on the
Michigan men's basketball team.
The redshirt junior forward
seemed to have
disappeared NOTEBOOK
in Michigan's
second- and third-round NCAA
Tournamentvictories. The start-
ing center for all but four games
during the regular season, Mor-
gan had been the Wolverines'
scrappy, all-around player who
collected rebounds when needed
and played solid defense.
But then the postseason hap-
pened. In the Big Ten Tour-
nament, Morgan got into foul
trouble and couldn't control the
ball in the paint, so freshman
forward Mitch McGary got a
majority of the post minutes and
performed exceptionally well.
McGary played so well that he
took Morgan's starting position.
Before Thursday's game against
South Dakota State, Michi-
gan coach John Beilein started
McGary at the "5" instead of
Morgan, and McGary impressed
and started again against Vir-
ginia Commonwealth. The
freshman tallied career-highs
in points, rebounds and minutes
against the Rams and played a
majority of both NCAA Tourna-
ment games last weekend.
During the Big Ten Tourna-
ment, Beilein said the coaching
staff reevaluates the starting
lineup after each game to prepare
for the next team's post matchup.
But the coaching staff didn't just
switch starters - they jumbled
the entire frontcourt rotation.
When McGary took a breather
and rested on the bench against
South Dakota State, redshirt

sophomore Jon Horford was the
second big off the bench instead
of Morgan. Morgan played just
one minute in the 15-point win
while McGary and Horford
shared minutes.
And against VCU, Morgan
didn't see the court at all. Even
when the Wolverines were up by
31 points late in the second half,
Morgan didn't play, and during
garbage time at the end of the
game, Beilein rightfully played
the seniors over other bench
players, including Morgan.
The recent developments
come as a surprise. When Mor-
gan was injured in late January,
McGary was expected to assume
the starting role, but Horford
got the majority of the starts
instead. When Morgan returned,
the rotation returned to normal,
with McGary, and then Horford
coming off the bench.
When asked whether or not
McGary has secured a starting
spot over Morgan, Beilein still
wouldn'tgive a straight answer.
"With the CBS games and
the extra timeouts, we can give
(McGary) more time," Beilein
said. "We've watched his
growth, he's at his lowest weight
all year long, this is his lowest
body weight he's had, so we can
play him longer."
It shouldn't be a surprise if
McGary gets the nod over Mor-
gan again on Friday. After his:
dominance in the Wolverines'
first two games of the NCAA
Tournament, McGary is eas-
ily the better option at center
against Kansas' Jeffy Withey.
HIDDEN HARDAWAY?:
Though the performance of
freshman forward Glenn Rob-
inson III has gotten much of the
headlines, the contribution of
Tim Hardaway Jr. hasn't been

overlooked.
The junior's hot 3-pointshoot-
ing helped fend off a South
Dakota State run in the first half
on Thursday, and his game-high
21 points helped carry the Wol-
verines into the third round. On
Friday, Hardaway stayed hot,
shooting 45 percent from the
field and 60 percent from beyond
the arc.
Though he has had a streaky
career at Michigan, Hardaway
always seems to step up on big
stages - he has performed well
in the three games the Wolver-
ines played in New York this
season, and was named NIT
Tip-Off MVP for his 39 points
in two games in the tournament.
And Hardawaystepped up inthe
NCAA Tournament, as well.
"Tim Hardaway has not only
been important in this game,
but has been important all three
years," Beilein said after Michi-
gan's win over VCU on Friday.
"When he has had opportunities
like he's had in the past couple
days to pass, to bring the ball
up against the pressure - that
wouldn't have happened last
year - to make the right, smart
plays to defend. I just watch this
young man's game, and it grows i
every day. Mothers may not see
it that way, I see it as growing. I
think his ceiling isvery high."
A (DIFFERENT) FINAL FOUR:
After months of speculation,
there are finally four.
Sophomore point guard Trey
Burke was named as one of four
finalists for the Naismith Men's
Collegiate Player of the Year
award on Sunday. The winner
will be announced April 7.
He is joined by Indiana's Vic-
tor Oladipo, Creighton's Doug
McDermott and Georgetown's
Otto Porter.

BASEBALL
'M' still searching'

as rotation keeps rotating
After the Michigan baseball six flyouts en route to his third Ogden and sophomore right-
team topped Western Illinois win of the season. hander James Bourque - are
in the first game of Saturday's "We have areallygood defense allowing a little too much con-
doubleheader, the classic pop- behind me, and I take that for tact, as opposing batters are bat-
hit "Bye, Bye, Bye" from the boy granted," Hill said. "I get a lot of ting .350 combined against them.
band N*SYNC blared through ground balls, a lot of fly balls and Bakich said the pitchers who
the press box speakers. everyone is really athletic behind are struggling need to work on
Aside from the immediate me, so they're making plays." mastering a quick pitching tempo
flashback to But Hill stands as the lone and continuously force contact.
late-elemen- JEREMY bright spot forMichigan's pitch- "When you do that, it means
tary years, SUMMITT ing staff, and the Wolverines you're pounding the zone and
the song was clearly have questions to answer getting strike one and strike two
reminiscent On Baseball heading into conference play on the hitters quickly," Bakich
of the Wol- next weekend. In fact, Hill is said Saturday. "Hill did a nice job
verines' struggle to operate, shall the only pitcher to start in every of that, and other guys need to do
we say, in-sync all weekend. weekend series this season. a better job following suit."
The most prominent issue lin- Bakich hasn't held back in giv- Ballantine and McAnallen
gering for Michigan is that Evan ing players opportunities to step have joined Hill the past two
Hill can't pitch every game. In up as starters, either. Five other weekends in the weekend rota-
order to successfully compete pitchers havestarted at least one tion, but neither has proven he is
against Big Ten competition, the game on the mound, but have not there to stay.
Wolverines need to fill out a con- maintained enough consistency In McAnallen's last two starts,
sistent rotation and the quicker to earn a regular starting role. he has pitched 9.2 innings, allow-
that happens, the better, with Just two of those five - senior ing 15 hits and five earned runs.
conference play looming next right-hander Ben Ballantine and Ballantine has fared a bit bet-
week. sophomore left-hander Trent ter statistically, and despite his
This weekend, the offense Szkutnik - are holding oppos- inability to pitch long outings
struggled, scoring only one run ing batters to , sub-.300 bat- he seems to be the leading can-
on 10 hits in the rubber match ting average. But Ballantine has didate to remain in the weekend
against Western Illinois. And struggled to record quality starts rotation.
pitching remained inconsistent this season, one reason the eldest When Bakich is fiddling with
besides freshman left-handed of the candidates hasn't stuck the rotation this week, Hill will
pitcher Evan Hill's remarkable around in the rotation very long. be there. No doubt. But this
one-hitter he threw in game one. In his four starts this season, weekend was the first time we've
"He just pounded the zone Ballantine has pitched less than seen a weekend rotation that
and did a nice job of attacking five innings three times. In those matched another from earlier in
the strike zone and forcing con- three lackluster outings, he's the year.
tact," said Michigan coach Erik pitched just 10.3 innings com- In order for the rotation to,
Bakich. bined. His only quality start of well, not alternate every week-
Bakich's pitching philoso- the season came against Holy end, Ballantine and McAnallen
phy focuses on quick tempo and Cross, when he allowed two will have to prove their worth in
forcing contact, two things Hill earned runs in six innings. a jam-packed, four-game sched-
excelled at during Saturday's The remaining three - junior ule this week. If they falter, the
outing. In seven innings of work, left-hander Logan McAnallen, job will be open for auditions, as
he induced six groundouts and sophomore right-hander Matt it has been all season.

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