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February 20, 2014 - Image 7

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The Michigan Daily, 2014-02-20

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The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com

Thursday, February 20, 2014 - 7A

Lohan provides depth on 'D'

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eshman cleared first time since Nov. 2.
"We'll piece together the
y doctors, will weekend," said Michigan coach
Red Berenson. "But I like some
iy this Friday vs. of our options now. I just think
we're going to be deeper on
Nittany Lions defense.
"That's our goal, is trying to
By GREG GARNO get our team going the way we
Daily Sports Editor think they are capable of The
players can't wait to just get
e Michigan hockey team's going."
se hasn't found any With that in mind, it's time
stency as of late. to consider how the Wolverines
allowed three goals in a will pair together on defense
end against Wisconsin before they make a run at a
y a month ago but bye in the first round of the
ndered seven to Penn Big Ten Tournament and look
two weeks ago and nine to to solidify a spot in the NCAA
esota last weekend. Tournament.

can play defense, but who?"
Bennett said. "With Lohan back
in the lineup, it adds a little
bit more competition for the
defensive pairings, so we have
to make sure everyone is giving
it their all."
.When Downing returns
Saturday, expect Berenson
to continue to pair the two
together. With the chemistry
that they've developed, any
other combination would be
unwise.
Lohan with freshman
Nolan De Jong:
Lohan may struggle to reach
peak physical form, but the
defensive presence he brings
should balance out well with the
offensive presence of De Jong.
"I think he just needs to
get into some good contact,"
Berenson said of Lohan. "We've
done enough drills and he just
needs to play against somebody
else, other than our players. But
I like his stick and his defensive
awareness - he'll be good
defensively."
At 6-foot-5, Lohan excelled
at clearing out the crease in
his month of playing time.
Meanwhile, De Jong is the only

But with the announcement
that freshman Kevin Lohan
has been cleared by doctors
to return, the 10th-ranked
Wolverines finally have some
depth at a position that has
been shaky at times this
season. Michigan will be
without freshman defenseman
Michael Downing and junior
forward turned defenseman
Andrew Sinelli on Friday
against the Nittany Lions due
to suspensions, but on Saturday,
the team will be healthy for the

Senior Mac Bennett and
Downing:
Few pairs have played as
well together as Bennett and
Downing. Arguably two of the
strongest defensemen on the
team, they have a combined
plus/minus rating of plus-12.
Bennett brings a superior
skating ability that pairs well
with the physical, enforcing
style that Downing supplies.
"I don't think it's a question
of whether we have guys that

defenseman other than Bennett
to fire more than 30 shots this
season.
Though Lohan paired with
senior Kevin Clare earlier in the
year and will do so again Friday,
according to Berenson, the
possibility of a more balanced
pair should work well over the
long run. But that's entirely
contingent on whether Lohan
can stay in the lineup.
Clare and either Sinelli or
junior Brennan Serville:
Berenson now has the luxury
of having more defensemen
than he needs to play, which
leaves him the option to either
rotate them every other game,
or find a pair that clicks.
"We'll see how we're doing
and which defenseman we want
to give a rest or sit out," he said.
"We may end up with a rotation,
but we'll see."
Clare and Sinelli have played
together in nearly every game
since Lohan's injury, and the duo
might be best servedby spending
more time with one another.
That pair presents another
offense/defense dimension that
could give life to an offense
that also needs help. Sinelli's
first goal of the season Saturday
at Minnesota highlights the
converted forward's ability to
attack.
His exceptional skating
ability compensates for Clare,
who lacks the speed and turning
ability of his counterpart. But
Clare makes up for his skating
ability with a knack for blocking
shots. This season, he's blocked
a team-high 54 - nine more
than Bennett, the Wolverines'
next-best shot-blocker.
Sinelli isn't a defenseman
by trade, though, so replacing
him with a more experienced
Serville might also be beneficial.
Serville hasn't had a standout
season, but he has been quietly
effective at times.
The trio could be effectively
rotated based on the opponent
- a more physical pairing could
be used against high-scoring
teams. But this weekend's
games will go a long way in
helping Berenson find the most
feasible options.
lies twice

Junior guard Shannon Smith scored 23 points to lead Michigan over Indiana.
Home on the road:
'M' bests Hoosiers

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Iverines move to opportunity to practice in the
building earlier in the day. But
-1 on the road the rapid adjustment didn't have
much of an effect on Michigan.
By LEV FACHER "We didn't think about
Daily Sports Writer that," Smith said. "There was a
basketball court, and we stayed
what was supposed to be on it."
le between two of the Big A 21-8, post-timeout run
best freshmen, junior guard midway through the first half
on gave Indiana (4-9, 17-9) a 32-24
INDIANA 58 lead with less than a minute
the MICHIGAN 70'. to go before halftime, but a
ght. buzzer-beating putback from
ith scored 23 points in senior forward Val Driscoll cut
gan's 70-58 win over the lead to six.
na in Bloomington on "We did not come out of the
esday night, her highest gate sharp," Barnes Arico said.
ver in a Big Ten game. "But once we settled down, we
anwhile, the Wolverines' became a lot more effective in
Thompson and the the halfcourt."
ers' Larryn Brooks tallied The Wolverines regained
I nine points, respectively. the lead slightly more than
guards fell well short three minutes into the second
Smith's best scoring half after capitalizing on back-
rmance since she put up 23 to-back Hoosier turnovers,
st Notre Dame on Dec. 14. resulting in buckets from Smith
hot selection) is the and junior forward Cyesha
st thing with Shannon," Goree.
Michigan coach - Kim Thompson put the nail in
s Arico, stating that the coffin with 3:15 remaining
is at her best when she in the game, converting on a
't view herself as a 3-point 3-pointer after junior forward
er. "Her strength is off the Nicole Elmblad missed a layup,
e and in the open court." got her own rebound and found
chigan and Indiana's first the freshman open frombeyond
nly regular-season meeting the arc.
e season almost didn't Michigan extended the lead
place after a metal beam to double digits with just over
rom the Assembly Hall 11 minutes to go in the game,
s and into a row of seats and it didn't look back. A key
lay afternoon, prompting factor in the run was limiting
ancellation of the Indiana Indiana's long-range shooting,
basketball game against and the Wolverines came just 15
on Tuesday night. seconds away from disallowing
a result, the retractable the Hoosiers to make a 3-pointer
hers at both ends of in the second half.
ibly Hall were folded "That was definitely the game
during the game, using the plan all night long," Barnes
space behind one baseline Arico said.
sore heavy construction Indiana guard Alexis
ment. The precautions, Gassion's 3-pointer with 15
ver, didn't stop a few seconds left was Indiana's
na fans from poking fun at first of the second half, but it
tuation and showing up to came far too late to make any
ime in bicycle helmets. significant difference.
e layout change provided a The win keeps Michigan in
ent shooting background contention to finish with one of
what either team was the top four spots in the Big Ten
tomned to, and to add insult standings. That would give the
sry, the Wolverines (8-6 Big Wolverines abye inthefirstround
7-10 overall) didn't have the of the Big Ten Tournament.

PAUL SHERMAN/Daily
Freshman defenseman Kevin Lohan will play this weekend after missing much of the season with a torn lateral meniscus.
How Swede it is: Hagelin tall

By DAVID MALINOWSKI
For the Daily
The Daily keeps tabs on former
Michigan athletes representing
their nations in Sochi, Russia, in
the men's hockey tournament.
Virtually everything that
could possibly happen in hockey
has happened in the 2014
Winter Olympics.
Between the upsets and
surprise performances from
normally underperforming
nations, the Olympics have had
no shortage of stories. After the
conclusion of the quarterfinal

Michigan hockey players will
have a chance to compete for gold,
while one has been sent home to
ponder what went wrong.
Former Michigan forward
Carl Hagelin picked the right
time to heat up, as he netted two
goals for Sweden in a 5-0 victory
over Slovenia. Hagelin came
to the bench after a hit to the
head from Slovenia's Sabahudin
Kovacevic midway through the
game, but he was able to play
through a bloody lip to pace his
team in the blowout win.
Swedish goaltender Henrik
Lundqvist recorded 19 saves and
earned his second shutout of the
tournament. The clean sheet
was the fourth of his career,
cattiirr noxr (-hrmn,- r .on

The New York Rangers' star
had to stay focused early in the
contest thanks to a strong push
from the surprisingly proficient
Slovenian team.
Alexander Steen scored the
game-winning goal with 1:10
left in the first period, and tallies
from Loui Eriksson and Daniel
Sedin added insurance in a four-
goal third period.
Former Michigan forward
Max Pacioretty and Team USA
rolled over Ondrej Pavelec
and the Czech Republic with
a 5-2 win at Shayba Ice Arena.
Pacioretty played 11:14 over
17Jn t -a r,-rn--~a ~n np +n

on goal as he continued his
mediocre showing on the
international stage.
Former Michigan forward
Brian Lebler and Austria
didn't fare as well as his fellow
Wolverines, as they were
handed a 4-0 loss by Slovenia
in the qualifying round. Lebler,
who plays professionally in
Austria, recorded four shots on
goal and 14 minutes of ice time
in the defeat.
Sweden will battle Finland
on Friday for the opportunity to
play for a gold medal. Yesterday,
the Finns were responsible for
ousting Russia, stunning the
host nation with a 3-1loss.
The United States, on the
other hand, will have its long-
awaited rematch with Canada
in the semifinals. Canada,
which topped the Americans
in the gold-medal match of
the 2010 Winter Olympics,
has had trouble scoring goals,
and recently lost a vital cog in
John Tavares to a knee injury.
Tavares, the captain and leading
scorer of the New York Islanders,
will miss the remainder of the
Olympics and possibly part of
the NHL season after twisting
his leg on the boards against
Latvia in the second period.
While Canada's strong talent
on paper hasn't amounted to
much scoring, the United States
has claimed the tournament's
leading scorer in Phil Kessel.
The standout Toronto Maple
Leaf netted his fifth goal of
the tournament against the
Czechs yesterday, the most by an
American Olympian since John
Leclair in 2002.
Although Hagelin and
Pacioretty both face significant
obstacles with their teams in
the semifinals, the opportunity
for Sweden and the United
States playing for the gold medal
remains a very real possibility.

FIL E PHOTO/Daily
Former Michigan forward Carl Hagelin scored twice to help Sweden advance in the Olympic men's hockey tournament.

4.

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