Monday, May 17, 2010
The Michigan Daily - michigandaily.com
Blue secures Sweet 16 berth
By MATT KRASNOFF
Daily Sports Writer
Second chances are something that
everyone wants but so few people
But this weekend, senior Tania
Mahtani got a second chance to play
her final home match.
Three weeks ago, the third-ranked
Wolverines held Senior Day when
they hosted their final regular sea-
son match. Mahtani - the team's lone
senior - was honored, and found suc-
cess on what was a very emotional day
Little did she know that Michigan
would get to host two rounds of the
NCAA regional for the first time in the
program's history, and that she would
get to play at home once again as the
Wolverines swept through the region-
als to advance to the Sweet 16.
"It was a huge honor (to get another
home match)," Mahtani said. "It was
one of our goals throughout the year
to host a regional, so it was just really
exciting to get to play on our home
The Wolverines dominated their
firstround match against Illinois-Chi-
cago, winning 4-0.
Michigan then faced rival Ohio
State on Saturday in the second round,
but the familiar foe proved to be no
match for the Wolverines.
Michigan won by another 4-0 mar-
gin, although the second round match
proved much tougher than the sweep
"We know Ohio State pretty well,
and they're a great group of competi-
tors so we knew we had our work cut
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M' wins third straight
Michigan women's tennis coach Ronni Bernstein finds herself in the Sweet 16 yet again.
out for us," Michigan coach Ronni
Bernstein said. "We're just happy we
could come through."
With each team winning one of
the first two doubles matches, it came
down to the number-one doubles
match. Juniors Whitney Taney and
Rika Tatsuno went up 6-0 in the eight-
game pro set, but Ohio State's Kelsey
Haviland and Cami Hubbs battled
back to make it 7-5.
With Ohio State to serve, Taney and
Tatsuno took a step back to prepare
for what they knew would be the final
The duo of juniors won four straight
points to win the match.
"After losing those few games we
just needed to loosen up and have a
laugh," Taney said. "Then after that
we just played a great game and we're
lucky to get the win."
Mahtani secured the second singles
victory and third overall point for
the Wolverines. After a tough loss in
doubles and a rough start to singles
- she lost the first set 6-4 - Mahtani
won the final two sets and lost just two
games in the process.
"It's a team sport, and we still got
the doubles point so she just needed to
forget about it," Bernstein said. "She's
the lone senior and to pull out a win
during her last time at the Varsity
Tennis Center is great."
Junior Denise Muresan - the No.
19 singles player in the country and
Mahtani's doubles partner - clinched
the match with her win in the No. 1
Michigan will now head to the
See SWEET 16, Page 11
The Wolverines beat
No. 3 Arizona State in
Denver, Colorado on
By BOBBY REEDY
Daily Sports Writer
For the third straight year, the
MCLA National Tournament ended
with Michigan hoisting the trophy.
On Saturday night in Denver,
Colorado under the bright lights of
Dick's Sporting Goods Park, the No.1
Wolverines celebrated after winning
the National Championship 12-11
over No. 3 Arizona State.
When thinking of the program
Michigan coach John Paul and
his coaching staff have assembled
in Ann Arbor, the word dynasty
comes to mind these days With four
straight conference titles and, more
importantly, three straight national
championships (and just one loss in
those three seasons), the Wolverines
have put together one of the greatest
runs in MCLA history.
"A lot of people were throwing that
term (dynasty) out last night," junior
attackman Trevor Yealy said. "I
would be reluctant to call ita dynas-
ty because myself and a lot of oth-
ers still have another year to go, and
we wouldn't want to jinx ourselves.
(Coach) Paul and (his staff) have put
together an amazing program and I
don't think it would be bad to call it
a dynasty. It's a pretty fitting title for
three in a row, and hopefully we can
keep running with it."
The junior class would like to
cement its place as the greatest to
ever to come through the program,
but that title currently belongs to the
outgoing seniors. They have com-
piled a sterling 71-6 record during
"(The senior class) started with 13
of them and 12 are graduating and
that's a great number (because) that
many of them stuck around," Paul
said. "It's a testament to these guys
that they embraced the changes we
made in the program, and they have
been such a big part of our success
over the last three years."
Peaking on May 15 was something
the team spoke of all year, and the
Wolverines definitely focused on fly-
ing out of the gates to start the game.
But the first quarter certainly
didn't seem that way. The Sun Dev-
ils struck first blood within the first
minute of play. A back-and-forth
period saw Michigan down 5-4 at its
"A lot of (the sloppy play) was first-
quarter jitters," Yealy said. "A couple
(of Arizona State's) goals were just
unfortunate... on one of them we had
a defender fall down and slip on the
See THREE-PEAT, Page 11