Iowa Set To Battle Michigan State

Oct. 7, 2003

This Week

After splitting a two-game road trip in the state of Michigan, the University of Iowa field hockey team returns home for a single game against Michigan State. The game will be held Saturday at Grant Field and starts at 1 p.m.


The Hawkeyes spilt a two-game road trip to Michigan last weekend. The Hawkeyes fell to the Michigan Wolverines, 1-0, Saturday, then rebounded Sunday with a 3-2 win over Central Michigan.

The game against the Wolverines was a hard-fought battle the whole way, with Michigan’s April Fronzoni netting the game-winner with 13:17 remaining in the game. The Wolverines earned a penalty corner, and all-American back Kristi Gannon ripped a shot towards the goal, where Fronzoni stuck her stick out at the right post and tipped it to the back of the cage.

Michigan out-shot Iowa 21-5 on the day, but the Hawkeye defense held strong and limited them to only one goal. Barb Weinberg made nine saves on the day.

The first half contained Iowa’s best scoring chance, when the Hawkeyes earned a penalty stroke. Freshman goalkeeper Beth Riley stopped the shot to preserve the 0-0 tie.

The Wolverines got a penalty stoke of their own just a few minutes into the second half, but Weinberg came up huge and turned Stephanie Johnson’s attempt away.

Against Central Michigan, the Hawkeyes jumped out to an early 2-0 lead on a pair of goals from senior forward Pattie Gillern. The Medford, NJ, native opened the scoring at 16:42 with an unassisted goal, then added another unassisted tally two minutes later. The goals gave Gillern a team-leading 13 on the season.

The Chippewas then began to turn the tide of momentum, however and cut the lead to 2-1 with a goal from Alisa Folk at the 25:35 mark. Folk then tied the game 6:30 into the second half with her second goal of the game.

Freshman forward Kelly Slattery scored the game-winning goal with 17:06 left in the game on an assist from Jessica Zosky. It was Slattery’s third goal of the season.


The Hawkeyes remained sixth in this week’s STX/NFHCA coaches poll.

Four of the seven Big Ten teams were ranked in the top 20, led by Michigan at No. 5. Penn State came in at No. 8, Michigan State at No. 9. Indiana dropped out of the poll.

The Hoosiers, Ohio State and Northwestern were listed as receiving votes.

Wake Forest held down the No. 1 spot.

On Michigan State

The Michigan State Spartans are currently 9-3 with a 2-0 record in the Big Ten Conference. They are ranked ninth by the NFHCA.

The Spartan offense is led by Alexandra Kyser and Veerle Goudswaard, each of whom have 26 points. Kyser, a senior, has 11 goals and four assists, while Goudswaard, a junior transfer, has nine goals and eight assists.

The goalkeeping duties are held down by Christina Kirkaldy, who is 9-3 with a 1.54 goals against average and a .831 save percentage.

The Hawkeyes lead the all-time series 38-6-1.

The Spartans are coached by former Hawkeye assistant Michelle Madison, who is in her tenth year with the Spartans.

She Just Keeps Scoring

Senior forward Pattie Gillern is having a career-season in her senior year.

The Medford, NJ, native has scored a team-best 13 goals so far this season. She has also added an assist for 27 points.

Her season total is already better than the team leaders from each of the past three seasons. Tiffany Fodera led the team with ten in 2000, Sarah Dawson led the team with 10 in 2001, while Gillern and Tiffany Leister led the team last season with six apiece.

Last Line of Defense

Freshman back Heather Schnepf has been enjoying an outstanding debut season with the Hawkeye defense.

The Medford Lakes, NJ, native has recorded a team-best four defensive saves so far this season, more than the entire Hawkeye team had last year. That total is the seventh-highest total in the nation this season.

Lauren Stiver is second on the team with two defensive saves, while Shelby Roche has one.

Lending a Helping Hand

Senior midfielder Lindsay Miller currently leads the Hawkeyes with six assists. She is also second on the team with ten points (two goals, six assists).

Sophomore midfielder Debbie Birrell is second on the team with four assists.

Offensive Improvement

The Hawkeye offense is performing at a much higher level than last season, scoring 31 goals so far. Last year, Iowa scored only 26 goals all season.

Gillern in the Big Ten

Senior Pattie Gillern is tied for the Big Ten lead with 13 goals. She is first in shots (67), game-winning goals (5) and third in points (27).

Gillern Ranks Nationally

Senior forward Pattie Gillern is ranked fifth nationally in goals scored with 12. She is tied with Ohio State’s Vanessa Immordino and North Carolina’s Rachel Dawson, the younger sister of Iowa junior forward Sarah Dawson.

Tenacious D

The Hawkeye defense is rapidly becoming a force to be reckoned with. Iowa has given up only ten goals all season. The team is fourth nationally in scoring defense, allowing only 0.829 goals per game. Iowa’s 10 goals allowed is the fewest in the Big Ten. Iowa has given up more than one goal in a game only twice this season, a 3-1 loss to No. 2 North Carolina and a 3-2 win over Central Michigan.

Weinberg Ranks Nationally

Barb Weinberg is making her case as one of the top goalkeepers not only in the Big Ten, but in the entire country.

The junior is fifth nationally with a 0.829 goals against average and ranks third with a robust .859 save percentage.

Weinberg in the Big Ten Junior goalkeeper Barb Weinberg leads the Big Ten in shutouts (5) and in goals against average (0.833).

The Louisville native also leads the league in minutes played at 844:11. Weinberg was a first team all-Big Ten selection last season.

Freshman Contribution

Freshman forward Kelly Slattery has worked her way into the starting lineup and is paying dividends for the Hawkeyes. The St. Louis, MO, native is fifth on the team in scoring with seven points off three goals and one assist.

Last weekend, Slattery picked up her first game-winning goal against Central Michigan.

Sisterly Love

Hawkeye ties always seem to run deep. This season, two juniors are the younger sisters of former Iowa all-Americans. Junior Tammy Leister is the younger sister of 2002 all-American Tiffany Leister, while junior Sarah Dawson is the younger sister of 2000 all-American Natalie Dawson.

Hawkeye Ties

When the Hawkeyes face a Big Ten foe, more than likely they will be facing a coach with University of Iowa roots. Four of the seven head coaches in the Big Ten either played or was an assistant at Iowa before taking her respective job.

Michigan State’s Michelle Madison (1982-89), Indiana’s Amy Robertson (89-92) and our own Tracey Griesbaum (92-99) were all assistants with the Hawkeyes before being named to their head jobs. Michigan head coach Marcia Pankratz played for Iowa from 1982-85.

The Head Coach

Tracey Griesbaum returns to the helm of the Hawkeye field hockey program for her third year.

She has done a good job rebuilding the Iowa program, recording a 27-15 record.

Before taking the head coaching job at Iowa, she was with United States Field Hockey. Griesbaum not only served as a full-time assistant, but was the head coach for the United States Under-21 Team. She led the Under-21 team to a second-place finish at the Pan American Junior Championships and a spot in the 2001 Junior World Cup.

Her work was good enough to earn her the 2000 United States Field Hockey Coach of the Year award.

Before taking the job with USA Field Hockey, Griesbaum was an assistant coach at Iowa for eight years.

The Assistants

Former Hawkeye Lisa Cellucci and Carla Tagliente will serve as the assistant coaches this season.

Cellucci was a four-year starter in the cage for Iowa. From 1995-98, Cellucci was a three-time All-American, four-time Regional All-American and a four-time All-Big Ten selection.

After graduation, Cellucci was an assistant coach at James Madison, where she helped the Dukes to a 15-7 record.

Tagliente was a four-time all-America selection for Maryland from 1997-2000, earning first team laurels her final three years.

She led the Terps to three ACC Titles and the 1999 NCAA Championship. She was also a two-time Broderick Award finalist and was a member of the U.S. National team from 1997-2003.

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