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IOWA CITY, Iowa — The 16th-ranked University of Iowa field hockey team defeated UC Davis Sunday, 5-0, at Grant Field. The Hawkeyes have now shut out their last two opponents and improve to 9-5 on the season.
“This definitely gave us a lot of momentum,” said UI head coach Lisa Cellucci. “We had a chance to do a lot of things that we wanted to work on for our upcoming games. We unleashed some offensive scoring 16 goals on the weekend, and getting two shutouts is great. Good momentum going into next week.”
The Hawkeyes got on the board early scoring in the seventh minute. Red shirt senior Natalie Cafone scored her 14th goal of the season when UC Davis turned the ball over and Cafone took the ball down the field and put the ball right under the cross bar to give Iowa a 1-0 lead.
Iowa continued its scoring in the 33rd minute when freshman Katie Birch notched her 10th goal of the year. The freshman scored off a corner to give the Hawkeyes a 2-0 lead.
Senior Sophie Plasteras added to the Hawkeyes lead in the 49th minute. UC Davis turned the ball over in front of its own cage, and the senior took advantage of the opportunity to give the home team a 3-0 advantage.
Cafone scored her second goal of the contest in the 55th minute. Cafone had her first shot saved by the UC Davis goalkeeper, but Cafone was able to locate the rebound and put it in the cage. The goal marks Cafone’s 62nd career goal, which moves her into eighth in career goals scored as a Hawkeye.
Iowa rounded out its scoring as time expired. The Hawkeyes were awarded a penalty corner with two seconds remaining and senior Chandler Ackers scored on the play. Junior Melissa Progarand freshman Sophie Sunderland were credited assists on the final goal.
Iowa registered 22 shots and had seven penalty corners. Senior goalkeeper Alexandra Pecora made one save in her third complete shutout of the season.
The nationally-ranked Hawkeyes are back in action next weekend as they travel for a pair of conference games. Iowa will face Northwestern Friday at 3 p.m. (CT), and Michigan on Sunday at noon (CT).