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    Wildcats Meet Buckeyes Sunday in Columbus

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    Junior captain Jackie Alyinovich has played every minute on the NU defense this year.

    NUSPORTSDOTCOM
    Junior captain Jackie Alyinovich has played every minute on the NU defense this year.
    NUSPORTSDOTCOM

    Oct. 18, 2013

    Northwestern (3-10-2, 1-6-0 Big Ten)
    at Ohio State (8-4-3, 2-3-2 Big Ten)
     Date Sunday, Oct. 20 | 11 a.m. CT
     Location  Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium  | Columbus, Ohio
     Live Video  Big Ten Digital Network on Wildcats All-Access
     Live Stats  Gametracker
     Social Media  @CatsWSoccer   |  Facebook

    NU vs. OSU Match Notes Get Acrobat Reader

    EVANSTON, Ill. -- Northwestern wraps up the week visiting Columbus, Ohio, for an 11 a.m. CT match at Ohio State on Sunday, Oct. 20. Just four matches remain in the 2013 regular season as the Wildcats are on the road for two (OSU, at Wisconsin Nov. 2) and play their final home matches of the year at Lakeside Field next weekend when Michigan State visits on Friday, Oct. 25 and Michigan comes to town for Senior Day on Sunday, Oct. 27.

    Last Time Out
    Northwestern battled Illinois Thursday night at Lakeside Field and despite the early 1-0 lead, the nation’s leading goal scorer came up with a hat trick as the Illini took the 3-1 victory. Illinois forward Janelle Flaws came into Thursday’s match tied for second in the nation in scoring and her three goals put her at 18 this season to lead the country.
     
    The Wildcats had a number of quality scoring opportunities, including two that hit the crossbar and a number of looks from close range that were saved, outshooting the Illini 15-9. Senior forward Kate Allen led NU with five shots while senior midfielder Julie Sierks added four and was the goal-scorer for the Wildcats. The duo combined for nine of NU’s 15 shots and four of the eight shots on goal.
     
    “In all honesty, we beat them last year, but we out-played them more tonight, so that’s what’s hard to take,” Northwestern head coach Michael Moynihan said. “I thought through the run of play we were fantastic. I thought Julie was unbelievable in the midfield, Margo (McGinty) had a nice game, and so did Nicole Jewell in the midfield. We were known for playing direct a few years ago and Illinois was the pretty team. Today I thought we were the pretty team and we didn’t get the result. I was very happy with the number of chances we created and I thought their goalkeeper had a few unbelievable saves. We’re close and it’s on us to do better with the chances we create. The spirit, effort, quality of play, everything, I thought was there, we just didn’t get the result.”
     
    Count On Sierks
    Midfielder Julie Sierks made her fourth start of the season Thursday vs. Illinois and made the most of her 90 minutes on the field, scoring her career-best third goal of the season. The Edina, Minn., native is now tied for the team lead along with Kate Allen and Katie Landgrebe with three goals so far this year and is tied for second in points with six. Prior to this year, Sierks had just one goal, which came during her freshman season. Sierks has scored her three goals off of eight shots on goal.
     
    Oh So Close
    Northwestern has had a number of quality scoring chances throughout the season, including 11 shots that have either hit the post or crossbar. On Thursday against Illinois, the Wildcats had two looks, one in each half, that both hit the crossbar. In fact, the Wildcats have hit the post or crossbar in each of the last four games and in five of seven Big Ten contests. Here’s a look at the close shots:
     
    10/17/13 • vs. Illinois (L, 3-1)
    [03:20] Shot by NU Allen, Kate HIT CROSSBAR.
    [74:57] Shot by NU Sierks, Julie HIT CROSSBAR.
     
    10/12/13 • vs. Minnesota (W, 2-0)
    [63:22] Shot by NU Allen, Kate HIT POST.
     
    10/6/13 • at Purdue (L, 1-0)
    [70:00] Shot by NU Steiner, Addie HIT CROSSBAR.
     
    10/4/13 • at Indiana (L, 2-1, 2OT)
    [88:11] Shot by NU Steiner, Addie HIT POST.
     
    9/27/13 • vs. Nebraska (L, 2-1)
    [26:14] Shot by NU Allen, Kate HIT POST.
    [68:58] Shot by NU Schrakamp, Sami HIT CROSSBAR.
     
    9/15/13 • vs. Oakland (W, 2-0)
    [63:15] Shot by NU Schrakamp, Sami HIT CROSSBAR.
     
    9/12/13 • vs. Western Michigan (T, 0-0, 2OT)
    [37:06] Header Shot by NU Waddle, Georgia HIT CROSSBAR.
    [57:58] Shot by NU Schrakamp, Sami HIT CROSSBAR.
     
    8/30/13 • at Northeastern (T, 1-1, 2OT)
    [27:23] Shot by NU Cikos, Natalie HIT CROSSBAR.
     
    Positive Trend
    Northwestern’s offensive numbers have been on the upswing since head coach Michael Moynihan joined the program. This year, the Wildcats are averaging 14.5 shots per game, an improvement upon last year’s mark of 10.3 shots per game. In 2011, the year before Moynihan arrived, the Wildcats had just 9.9 shots per contest. The 14.5 shots per game mark ranks 10th in the Big Ten, but Kate Allen’s 4.00 looks per game is second in the conference.
     
    In Big Ten contests, the Wildcats are averaging 15.6 shots per game while limiting foes to just 13.9 chances. NU’s 109 shots in seven conference games rank second in the Big Ten while Kate Allen ups her shot average to 5.14 looks per game in conference matches to rank second. She is nearly a shot ahead of Wisconsin’s Rose Lavelle, who comes in at third in Big Ten-only matches with 4.17 looks per game.
     
    Know the Foe: Ohio State
    2013 Record: 8-4-3, 2-3-2 Big Ten
    Notable: OSU also played Thursday night and fell 4-2 on the road at Penn State. Sunday’s match is senior day for the five Buckeyes as this year’s senior class has the second-highest win total of any senior class in program history. Ohio State freshman Nichelle Prince leads the team with eight goals and 22 points and is tied for the team lead with six assists. She is the reigning Big Ten Freshman of the Week after scoring the game-winning goal and assisting on two others in OSU’s 3-1 win over Michigan State.
    More Info: OhioStateBuckeyes.com

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