14 - The Michigan Daily - Monday, May 20, 2002
By Charles Paradis
Daily Sports Editor
With the Big Ten season coming
to an end, Michigan has been in a
must-win situation for the past two
weeks. The Wolverines fell behind in
the Big Ten standings early in the
season but retained a chance to
make the Big Ten Tournament if
they could win the majority of their
games in the waning weeks of the
While Michigan produced runs
when needed and executed offen-
sively yesterday in its 7-4 win over
Purdue, the rest of the Big Ten sea-
Close, but no cigar
The six teams with the highest
winning percentage advance to
the Big Ten Tournament, and the
Wolverines were just .31 per-
centage points away.
1. Minnesota 18-10 .642
2. Ohio State 18-11 .621
3. Michigan State 16-12 .571
4. Indiana 15-14 .517
5. Iowa 15-16 .484
6. Northwestern 14-15 .483
Illinois 14-15 .483
8. Michigan 14-17 .452
9. Purdue 13-19 .406
10. Penn State 11-19 .367
son had been another story.
"We had some guys, myself
included, trying to do way too much
- just stuff beyond their abilities,"
sophomore catcher Jake Fox said.
"This weekend, we just came out
and said, 'We're at the end (of the
season). We just need to play. We
don't need to play well, we just have
Michigan took care of business
against Purdue, taking three of four
from the Boilermakers. The series
capped off one of the most success-
ful weekends of the season for the.
Wolverines, who were swept in a
doubleheader last Monday at North-
western, virtually ending their hopes
of a Big Ten Tournament berth.
"This weekend, we showed our
abilities that we didn't show in the
first part of season," Fox said. "We
came out and were relaxed, and we
were able to play baseball instead of
trying to do too much."
Entering yesterday's game, not
only did Michigan need to win, but
Iowa and Northwestern also had to
lose for the Wolverines to earn a
postseason berth. But this did not
affect Michigan's attitude going into
the game - an attitude instilled in
them by interim coach Chris Harri-
"In this life, there's things you
can't control, and there's things you
can," Harrison said. "The things you
Michigan catcher Jake Fox smacked three homeruns this weekend against
Purdue, bringing his total for the season to 11.
can't'control, you're wasting your
time and your energy worrying
about them or thinking about them.
You do what you can, and you can't
worry about things you have no con-
The Wolverines finished the year
off in strong fashion, winning four
of their last five games - all five at
The Fish, where Michigan finsihed
with a 13-7 record this season.
DEPARTING WOLVERINES: Michgan
seniors Bobby Korecky, Jeff Trzos,
Kirk Taylor and Joe Young were all
honored at yesterday's Senior Day.
All four made pitching appearances
for the Wolverines and combined for
seven wins in 36 appearances this
season. Korecky alone accounted for
five of those wins.
DoUBLE THREAT: Jake Fox proved
he was not just a threat with a bat.
He not only contributed offensively
for the Wolverines yesterday, but he
also played a large role in Michi-
gan's defense. In the top of the third
inning, Fox threw out Daniel Under-
wood as he attempted to steal sec-
ond base. Fox took the high pitch
from Trzos and hurled the ball to
second, easily beating the sliding
Continued from Page 134
catcher Jake Fox.
Fox then put the game out of reach
for Purdue. In the bottom of the sixth,
he stepped in to the batter's box with a
runner on first. Fox, who had already
hit two homers in the weekend series,
blasted his 1Ith longball of the season
over the left-field wall.
Fox's three homers gave him double-
digit homeruns for the first time in his
two-year career at Michigan.
"I was actually just looking for a base
hit to move the runner around, and he
threw me an inside fastball," Fox said.
"I happened to put the barrel on it and
got it up in the air. And the wind was
blowing out today, so it just took it over
Much like Michigan, Purdue has
been one ofthe top teams in the Big Ten
over the last few years but has struggled
greatly this season.
"(The Boilermakers) put a lot of
pressure on you and I thought we han-
dled the pressure very well, especially
defensively," interim coach Chris Harri-
"This weekend was a great way to go
out," Fox said. "Overall the year wasn't
a great year, but I think this was a great
way to end it."
Continued from Page 13
Wolverines two weeks ago in the Big
Leading the Wolverines to victory was
an exceptional performance by the sec-
ond varsity eight boat and a first- place
finish by the first varsity four. But it was
the seniors that led the way.
"Our seniors won it for three straight
years, and they wanted to make it four,"
Rothstein said. "They showed great
leadership helping this team to prepare,
and it's a credit to the seniors and the
Despite rowing well as a team, the
first varsity eight's second-place fin-
ish was an indicator of the need for
some fine tuning in specific areas.
The Wolverines have been struggling
with their starts all year long, and
despite an improvement from two
weeks ago, the rowers know that a
better effort is needed.
"It's still lacking a little bit, so that's
one place we can work on," first varsity
eight coxswain Helen Dalis said.
The Wolverines must now look for-
ward to the NCAA Championships,
where they were runner-up last year.
In a season full of ups and downs, the
Wolverines seem to be peaking at the
"The important race is still yet to
come. In two weeks, that's when we'll
peak," Dalis said.
The Wolverines may not have the
momentum that last year's team had, but
nevertheless, Michigan is headed to the
finals again, after persevering and over-
coming some differences.
"We had a diverse group of personali-
ties, but we've come together finally, and
everyone's willing to respect each other,"
Kate Maxim said. "I feel stronger for it,
and I'm more proud of this year's win."
Last year was a breakthrough year for
the Michigan program after three
straight years of fifth-place finishes. The
Wolverines hope that this year's product
will be a national championship.
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