The Daily Iowan

Hawkeye field hockey returns home with a ranked win and loss

Iowa field hockey defeats No. 14 Wake Forest, but falls short against second-ranked North Carolina in overtime.

Iowa+field-hockey+forward+Maddy+Murphy+looks+toward+the+sideline+against+Michigan+on+Oct.+15%2C+2017.++The+Wolverines+defeated+the+Hawkeyes%2C+3-2.+
Iowa field-hockey forward Maddy Murphy looks toward the sideline against Michigan on Oct. 15, 2017.  The Wolverines defeated the Hawkeyes, 3-2.

Iowa field-hockey forward Maddy Murphy looks toward the sideline against Michigan on Oct. 15, 2017. The Wolverines defeated the Hawkeyes, 3-2.

David Harmantas/The Daily Iowan

David Harmantas/The Daily Iowan

Iowa field-hockey forward Maddy Murphy looks toward the sideline against Michigan on Oct. 15, 2017. The Wolverines defeated the Hawkeyes, 3-2.

Sarah Altemeier, Sports Reporter

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The Iowa field-hockey team had a big weekend, traveling to Chapel Hill, North Carolina, to take on No. 14 Wake Forest and No. 2 North Carolina. In the season-opener against the Deacons, the Hawkeyes proved they were ready, beating them, 2-1, before losing to the Tar Heels in overtime, 2-1.

Iowa came out ready to play in the first period against the Deacons, and junior captain Katie Birch led the team to its first goal of the season, scoring on a hard shot from the top right of the circle in the 14th minute. Sophomore Maddy Murphy added a goal 10 minutes later on a reverse stick shot from the left, making the score 2-0 going into halftime.

In the second half, the Hawkeyes remained strong against the Deacons’ offense, only letting one shot hit the net in the 57th minute. Junior Leslie Speight had her first career start as goalie and finished with 8 saves.

Iowa played 18 of its 21 players in the game including six freshmen: Meghan Conroy, Anthe Nijziel, Lokke Stribos, Leah Zellner, Makenna Maguire, and Cat Nicholson, who all made their first Hawkeye appearances.

“This was an unbelievable team win,” Iowa head coach Lisa Cellucci said in a release. “Our work rate and willingness to stick to the game plan through the course of the game was outstanding. I am so proud of this team.”

The team had a quick turnaround and played North Carolina 24 hours later. The Hawkeyes were defeated, 2-1, in overtime after a hard-fought match against the second-ranked team in the country.

Murphy got her second goal of the weekend 30 minutes into the match. She scored on a penalty corner assisted by Stribos, the first of her career.

After holding the Tar Heels to a scoreless first period, Carolina put in the equalizer in the 62nd minute. The game then went into overtime, and the Hawkeyes couldn’t stop Ashley Hoffman from getting her third goal of the season. Hoffman scored 8:27 into the extra period to defeat the Hawkeyes.

The Tar Heels out-shot the Iowa 17 to 4 and had 8 corners, compared with Iowa’s 1. Speight had a career high of 9 saves in goal.

Despite the loss, Cellucci was glad that the team was able to improve and leave North Carolina a better team.

“The fight and resiliency of our team today was something to see,” Cellucci said in a release. “We had opportunities to finish in overtime, and we will watch film and learn from them so our future opportunities are executed. We are walking out of Chapel Hill with our heads high, [because] we got better today.”

The field-hockey team will head back to Iowa City to train and get ready to take on Dartmouth at Grant Field at 3 p.m. Friday.

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