No. 1 Iowa field hockey coasts to wins in Michigan

The Hawkeyes improved to 14-0 on the season with victories over Michigan State and Central Michigan.

Iowa+forward%2Fmidfielder+Maddy+Murphy+runs+the+ball+down+the+field+during+the+Iowa+Field+Hockey+game+against+Ohio+University+on+Sep.+10%2C+2021+at+Grant+Field.+Iowa+defeated+Ohio%2C+8-0.+

Casey Stone

Iowa forward/midfielder Maddy Murphy runs the ball down the field during the Iowa Field Hockey game against Ohio University on Sep. 10, 2021 at Grant Field. Iowa defeated Ohio, 8-0.

Ben Palya, Sports Reporter


No.1 Iowa field hockey coasted to two wins against Michigan State and Central Michigan this weekend, moving to 14-0 on the season.

The Hawkeyes dominated Big Ten foe Michigan State, 5-0, on Friday afternoon. Iowa outshot the Spartans, 29-1, including 16 shots on goal. 

Junior midfielder Esme Gibson scored twice against Michigan State, while seniors Lokke Stribos Anthe Nijziel, and sophomore Alex Wesneski each found the back of the net once. 

Against Central Michigan, the Hawkeyes scored to a 4-0 win with several starters resting for the majority of the match. The Chippewas did not get a single shot on target the entire match, while the Hawkeyes accounted for 19 shots.

Gibson, Nijziel, Stribos, and fifth-year senior midfielder Maddy Murphy scored for Iowa in the win — the Hawkeyes had five different goal scorers on the season.

Iowa finished its road stretch of the regular season undefeated, and the Hawkeyes have three remaining home games before the postseason.

BIG PICTURE

Iowa is now 14-0 on the season, off to its best start since 1992. Iowa has scored five or more goals in four games this season.

The win against Michigan State also improves the Hawkeyes to 5-0 in Big Ten play, putting them in first place in the conference standings.

GIBSON GETS GOING ON OFFENSE

Gibson has been an anchor in midfield for the Hawkeyes, and continued her dominance in the fall 2021 season.

This weekend, Gibson boosted her goals total to six — her highest season total as a Hawkeyes.

Against Michigan State, Gibson opened up the match with a quick goal in the fifth minute. After her goal, she kept the momentum and found the back of the net later in the game.

The midfielder notched her third goal of the weekend against Central Michigan on Sunday.

KEY PLAYERS GET REST

Some starting Hawkeyes managed to get rest against Central Michigan on Sunday, as Murphy got Iowa out to an early lead. 

Fifth-year senior Ellie Holley, junior Sofie Stribos, senior Leah Zellner, and Murphy all played under 20 minutes in the contest.

Multiple substitutes got key minutes against the Chippewas ahead of a tough home slate, which includes Michigan, Ohio State, and Northwestern. 

UP NEXT

No. 1 Iowa will take on undefeated No. 2 Michigan at Grant Field Friday at 2 p.m. in a battle of the top two teams in the nation.

Following the Wolverines, the Hawkeyes will play Ohio State on Sunday.

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