IOWA CITY, Iowa — University of Iowa freshman Katie Birch has been named Big Ten Conference Freshman of the Week, the league office announced Tuesday. It is the first honor of Birch’s career.
A native of York, England, Birch is the first Hawkeye to earn a conference weekly award since Makenna Grewe earned Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors on Sept. 15 of last year.
Making her collegiate debut at the ACC/Big Ten Challenge in Winston Salem, North Carolina, last weekend, Birch helped the Hawkeyes to a 1-1 record against two of the top teams in the country.
In Iowa’s season opening 2-1 upset victory over No. 7 Wake Forest on Saturday, Birch recorded her first career assist and was part of a Hawkeye defense that fended off three Demon Deacon penalty corners, including a critical stop in the waning moments of the game. The defender played the entire length of the game in Sunday’s 4-1 loss to No. 1 North Carolina.
Birch and the Hawkeyes (1-1) return to action this Friday for their home opener against Fairfield (0-1). Game time is 2 p.m. (CT) at Grant Field. Admission is free to the public. The game will also be streamed on Hawkeye All-Access.