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    Ninth-Ranked 'Cats Travel to No. 15 Michigan, Host Kent State

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    Ann Arbor native Kelsey Gradwohl and the Wildcats are seeking their sixth win over a ranked opponent on Friday at Michigan.

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    Ann Arbor native Kelsey Gradwohl and the Wildcats are seeking their sixth win over a ranked opponent on Friday at Michigan.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM

    Oct. 4, 2012

    #9 Northwestern (10-2, 1-1 Big Ten) at #15 Michigan (7-4, 0-1 Big Ten)
    Friday, Oct. 5, 2012
    Ocker Field
    Ann Arbor, Mich. • 3 p.m. CT
    Gametracker

    #9 Northwestern vs. Kent State
    Sunday, Oct. 7, 2012
    Leonard B. Thomas Athletic Complex
    Evanston, Ill. • Noon
    Gametracker

    In-game Twitter updates: @NU_SportsLIVE
    Tickets: General admission - $7, Youth/Senior - $4, NU students - FREE w/ valid WildCARD

    EVANSTON, Ill. -- Ninth-ranked Northwestern plays a pair of matches this weekend as it travels to No. 15 Michigan on Friday before returning home on Sunday to face Kent State.

    Friday's match gets underway at 3 p.m. Central time, while Sunday's contest is slated for a noon start.

    NU will have played 11 of its first 13 matches of the season away from home following Friday's trip to Ann Arbor before Sunday's contest opens up a five-game homestand.

    The Wildcats have a number of connections to Ann Arbor and the University of Michigan. Redshirt sophomore Kelsey Thompson, freshman Kelsey Gradwohl and assistant coach Zoe Almquist are all Ann Arbor natives while head coach Tracey Fuchs was the associate head coach at Michigan for 12 seasons.

    Northwestern enters Friday's match on the heels of a thrilling 5-4 overtime win over then-No. 6 Penn State. Chelsea Armstrong completed her hat trick with a goal 12 seconds into the extra session to give the 'Cats the win after rallying from two goals down. Armstrong was named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week for the third time this season and the 13th time in her career for her efforts. Meanwhile, Lisa McCarthy, who had a goal and two assists in the game, earned her second Big Ten Freshman of the Week honor this year.

    Armstrong comes into the weekend tied with Princeton's Kat Sharkey for first in the nation with 19 goals. The native of Perth, Australia, moved into third place in Big Ten history for career goals (90) and points (215) in the win over the Nittany Lions. She ranks first in the Big Ten with 42 points in 2012 and Tara Puffenberger is third with 27.

    Northwestern is 5-1 against ranked opponents this season, including a perfect 4-0 in true road games.

    Scouting Michigan
    The Wolverines (7-4, 0-1 Big Ten) have won all five of their home matches this season, including a 7-1 victory over Pacific last Friday. Michigan dropped its Big Ten opener at Penn State, 4-3, on Sept. 23. Rachael Mack is the team leader with 11 goals on the season that ranks tied for third in the Big Ten. Goalkeeper Haley Jones has a 1.58 goals-against average as well as a .778 save percentage that is second in the conference. Marcia Pankratz is in the fourth season of her current stint as head coach and 13th season overall.

    Scouting Kent State
    The Golden Flashes bring a 5-8 overall record into Saturday's contest at Miami (Ohio) before coming to Evanston. Kent State is winless in five true road games so far this season, including an 11-2 loss at Duke on Sunday. Julia Hofmann leads the team with 10 goals, while Sabrina Binder is first on the squad with 11 assists. In goal, Jahna Jordan sports a 4.54 goals-against average and a .646 save percentage. Kathleen Wiler is in her seventh season as the head coach at Kent State.

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