Iowa field hockey announces 2021 fall schedule

The Hawkeyes face a competitive schedule in 2021-22, opening the season against Wake Forest and North Carolina in the Big Ten/ACC challenge.


Jerod Ringwald

Iowa Forward Maddy Murphy walks the ball to the corner before a penalty corner during a field hockey game between Iowa and Michigan State at Grant Field on Friday, March 26, 2021. The Hawkeyes defeated the Spartans 5-0.

Ben Palya, Sports Reporter

After a 2020-21 spring campaign that saw Iowa field hockey reach the Final Four of the NCAA Tournament, the Hawkeyes face a quick turnaround for the upcoming fall 2021 season.

Iowa played a condensed, Big Ten-only slate in the postponed 2020-21 spring season because of COVID-19. Despite the conference-only schedule, three Big Ten teams were included in the 12-team NCAA Tournament in April.

The Hawkeyes have a full 2021-22 season once again this fall, but the spring slate gives Iowa less rest than the usual offseason.

After an exhibition game against Northwestern on Aug. 21 in Iowa City, the Hawkeyes open the season by hosting the Big Ten/ACC Challenge at Grant Field. Iowa will play Wake Forest on Aug. 27 as its first nonconference game in 2020-21.

That same weekend, the Hawkeyes will get another crack at the three-time defending NCAA champion North Carolina on Aug. 29. Iowa lost, 3-0, to the Tar Heels in the NCAA Tournament Final Four in the spring, and the Hawkeyes are looking forward to a chance to face North Carolina on Grant Field.

“We couldn’t be happier to get another chance at [North Carolina] and to start the season off with a bang,” senior forward Maddy Murphy said. “It will definitely boost our motivation over the next couple of weeks.”

After the Big Ten/ACC Challenge, Iowa faces four nonconference opponents before starting the Big Ten schedule.

The Hawkeyes will travel to Boston, Massachusetts, to play University of New Hampshire and Boston University on Sept. 4 and 5, respectively.

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One week later, Iowa will host Ohio University on Sept. 10 and St. Louis University on Sept. 12 in Iowa City.

Iowa opens up Big Ten play on the road against Indiana on Sept. 17. The Hawkeyes opened the 2020-21 season against the Hoosiers with a 1-0 loss in Virginia Beach, Virginia.

That same weekend, Iowa will face Louisville in a nonconference matchup in Louisville, Kentucky, on Sept 19. In one of Iowa’s biggest road tests of the season, the Cardinals advanced to the NCAA Tournament Final Four in the 2020-21 spring season before falling to Michigan, 2-1.

A home doubleheader against Penn State Sept. 24 and 28 is followed by an east coast road trip to Maryland and Rutgers Oct. 1 and Oct. 3.

The Hawkeyes beat Penn State twice in the 2020-21 season in Virginia Beach, both times 1-0. In Iowa City last season, the Hawkeyes split its doubleheader with Maryland, with the Terrapins taking the first game, 1-0, and Iowa taking the second, 3-0.

The second half of Iowa’s two-week road trip takes the Hawkeyes to Michigan, where Iowa will take on Michigan State on Oct. 8 and Central Michigan on Oct.10.

With a front-heavy schedule, the Hawkeyes will have time to rest before the postseason begins.

Iowa will play NCAA Tournament runner-up Michigan in Iowa City on Oct. 15, and Ohio State on Oct. 17.

The Hawkeyes will then have 11 days off before finishing the regular season on Oct. 29 against Northwestern.

The 2021 Big Ten Field Hockey Tournament will be held in New Brunswick, New Jersey, beginning on Nov. 4 and run through Nov. 7. The NCAA Field Hockey Tournament will begin on Nov. 12 at campus sites.

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