Iowa Shut Down By Penn State

Oct. 8, 2005

Box Score

The No. 12 University of Iowa field hockey team was unable to upset sixth-ranked Penn State today.

“Even though we were down 1-0 at the half, I still thought that we had the motivation to comeback in the second half and play well. Unfortunately, we played right into their hands,” said Iowa Head Coach Tracey Griesbaum.

Ten minutes into the game, Penn State’s Natalie Berrena scored a goal from the top of the arc to take a 1-0 lead. Iowa took six shots in the first half, but were denied each time by the Nittany Lions and goalkeeper Megan Akstin.

Penn State dominated in the second half and continued to build their lead. Shaun Banta scored her 12th goal of season to give the visitors a 2-0 lead and Berrena picked up her second score of the game at the 59:37 mark. The Lions put the game out of reach when Mallory Weisen was successful on a penalty shot. The Hawkeyes had two corner shot opportunities near the end of the game, but didn’t convert and lost 4-0.

Despite the final score, Iowa actually outshot Penn State, 12-11, and also took nine corner shots to just five by Penn State.

“We had a major meltdown in the circle defense with our deep defenders and our goalie. And our corner shots just weren’t falling today; our shots were either wide or right down the middle,” said Griesbaum.

Freshman Caitlin McCurdy took six shots for the Hawkeyes and Debbie Birrell and Lauren Pfeiffer each had two. Juniors Heather Schnepf and Kara Zappone each had one attempt.

Goalkeeper Lissa Munley had seven saves in the game, but also had four Penn State shots slip by her. That raises her season goals against total to 23 and her average to 2.30. Munley has racked up 51 saves for a .689 save percentage.

Iowa plays a conference game against Northwestern next Friday in Evanston at 3 p.m. The Hawkeyes return home for a Big Ten contest against Indiana University on October 22.