Iowa field hockey increases win streak to four

No. 14 Iowa field hockey defeats Providence and New Hampshire over the weekend.


David Harmantas

Iowa's Makenna Grewe follows through on her shot off a penalty corner during a game against Ball State on Sunday, Sept. 2, 2018.

Sarah Altemeier, Sports Reporter

The Iowa field-hockey team headed home with two more wins than when it left last week.

The Hawkeyes defeated Providence, 1-0, on Sept. 8, then turned around and beat New Hampshire, 2-0, to increase its winning streak to four games. Iowa outshot the Friars, 12-1, and the defense gave up only 1 penalty corner. Senior midfielder Makenna Grewe scored for the third game in a row, with an assist from junior captain Katie Birch in the 52nd minute.

“This was a hard-fought victory,” head coach Lisa Cellucci said in a release. “Providence had a great game plan, and it is a skilled team. We played great team defense and continued to chip away until we broke through.”

On Sunday in Durham, New Hampshsire, the Hawkeyes got their fifth win of the season against the Wildcats. Again, Iowa easily outshot its opponent, 12-2, and was awarded 10 corners while New Hampshire only got 2. Six of Iowa’s shots were on target. Sophomore forward Maddy Murphy scored in the 18th minute on a Birch assist. Murphy now leads the Hawkeyes with 5 goals this season.

Freshman defender Anthe Nijziel put away her first career goal and sealed the win with four minutes left in the match. She is the second freshman to score this year, the other being Leah Zellner.

The dearth of Wildcat shots was thanks in part to Iowa’s stout defense.

“Our outletting was very effective today,” Cellucci said in a release. “Our back three faced a lot of pressure, stayed poised, and did a great job starting our attack. Our ability to tackle back and keep defensive pressure was outstanding. We will take a lot away from this weekend and continue to build to be better.”

The Hawkeyes only allowed 3 shots and gave up 3 penalty corners in two games. Junior goalkeeper Leslie Speight put up her second and third shutouts of the season, and Birch has tallied 5 assists in the past three games, leading the team.

Over the past six games, the Hawkeyes averaged 3.17 goals and 15.3 shots per game compared with their opponents’ 0.67 goals and 7.3 shots. Last season after six games, Iowa held a losing record of 2-4. It turned it around early this season, though, now sitting at 5-1. The Hawkeyes will attempt to continue their winning streak at Grant Field as they take on Penn at 2:30 p.m. Sept. 14. Iowa will then meet its first Big Ten opponent, Indiana, at noon Sept. 16.

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