Oct. 26, 2012
#8 Northwestern (16-2, 4-1 Big Ten) at #12 Iowa (12-5, 3-2 Big Ten)
Sunday, Oct. 28, 2012
Iowa City, Iowa Noon
Streaming Video: Big Ten Digital Network via Wildcats All-Access
In-game Twitter updates: @NU_SportsLIVE
EVANSTON, Ill. -- Eighth-ranked Northwestern takes aim at its sixth field hockey title in Big Ten history on Sunday as it travels to Iowa City to take on 12th-ranked Iowa.
The contest gets underway at noon and is being streamed live on the Big Ten Digital Network via Wildcats All-Access.
The Wildcats enter the contest riding a high, having won eight straight contests and 15 of their last 16. Since a 3-2 loss at Ohio State on Sept. 21, NU has out-scored its eight opponents by a 37-7 margin. Four of those goals for the opposition came in a 5-4 overtime victory by Northwestern over No. 6 Penn State.
In fact, the Wildcats' defense has allowed just one goal over the last 414 minutes and 55 seconds of action, spanning six contests. Behind sophomore goalkeeper Maddy Carpenter, NU ranks first in the Big Ten and seventh in the nation with a 1.11 goals-against average.
Offensively, senior Chelsea Armstrong paces the 'Cats as she leads the nation with 29 goals and 65 points this season. She is coming off a four-goal game in a 6-0 victory over Missouri State on Senior Day last Sunday. Her fourth goal of the contest was the 100th of her career, making her just the ninth player in NCAA history to reach the milestone. The same tally allowed her to take sole possession of the Northwestern single-season record.
For her efforts, Armstrong was named the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week for the 14th time in her career.
Freshman Lisa McCarthy has been the beneficiary of Armstrong's lethal stroke off penalty corners as the freshman ranks second nationally with 18 assists, while Julia Retzky is tied for third with 14.
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A win on Sunday would give Northwestern the top seed for next week's Big Ten tournament which is also being played in Iowa City beginning next Thursday.
The Hawkeyes (12-5, 3-2 Big Ten) need some help if they are to earn a share of the Big Ten title. A 2-1 home loss to Michigan on Friday put a dent in Iowa's title hopes. The Hawkeyes would need Michigan State to defeat Penn State on Saturday and then post a win themselves over the Wildcats to get a piece of what would then be a four-way tie for the title. Jessica Barnett paces a balanced scoring attack with nine goals, while Dani Hemeon and Kelsey Mitchell have eight apiece. In goal, Kathleen McGraw sports a 1.44 goals-against average and a .757 save percentage. Tracey Griesbaum is in her 13th season as head coach.
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