Elite Eight Preview

Hawkeye Fan Shop — A Black & Gold Store | 24 Hawkeyes to Watch 2019-20 | Hawk Talk Monthly – November | NCAA Tournament Bracket | Notes (PDF)

The sixth-ranked University of Iowa field hockey team (17-4) faces top-ranked and undefeated North Carolina at Karen Shelton Stadium in the second round of the NCAA Tournament Sunday at 12 p.m. (CT) for a trip to the NCAA Final Four. 
• The Hawkeyes fell to the Tar Heels, 2-1, in their second game of the season. Iowa held a 1-0 lead after three periods with a goal from freshman Sofie Stribos, but North Carolina scored two goals in the final five minutes to upend the Hawkeyes. 
• North Carolina leads the all-time series, 29-3, but the Hawkeyes have played the Tar Heels close in the last two meetings. Iowa fell 2-1 in overtime to North Carolina in 2018. 

• Iowa field hockey fans can follow along via live stats on hawkeyesports.com. Click on the “Live Stats” link found on the field hockey schedule page.  
• Fans can also follow @IowaFieldHockey on Twitter for in-game updates.
• The game will be streamed live on YouTube via UNC Athletics. 

• Iowa has been to the second round of the NCAA Tournament 17 times in school history. 
• The Hawkeyes’ current six-game winning streak is their longest of the season. Five of Iowa’s six wins during the winning streak were against ranked opponents. 
• The Hawkeyes are coming off a 3-2 NCAA First Round win over eighth-ranked Duke. Iowa came out strong with a 3-0 halftime lead and closed out the game after Duke pulled its goalkeeper.
• In Iowa’s first round win, sophomore Ciara Smith scored or assisted on every goal, scoring two goals to bump her season total to four. She has scored three postseason goals.
• Head coach Lisa Cellucci and three Hawkeyes (senior Katie Birch, junior Maddy Murphy, & sophomore Anthe Nijziel) earned All-Big Ten honors. Cellucci was named Big Ten Coach of the year, becoming Iowa’s first since 2004. Birch was Iowa’s first unanimous first-team selection since 2016. Murphy was also a first team selection, while Nijziel earned second-team honors. 

• The Hawkeyes are 27-24 all-time in NCAA Tournament history. Iowa’s 27 wins are the third most in the Big Ten. 
• Iowa has advanced to the Final Four 11 times in school history with its last in 2008. Iowa has four NCAA Championship appearances, including a 1986 National Championship. 

The Hawkeyes completed their sweep of the Big Ten regular season title and Big Ten Tournament Championship last Sunday with a 1-0 overtime win over Penn State, becoming the first ever team in Iowa history to do so. Iowa is only the fifth team in Big Ten history to complete the feat.

• Coming off a Big Ten regular season title, the Hawkeyes were crowned Big Ten Tournament Champions after downing Ohio State, Northwestern, and Penn State. Iowa defeated Penn State 1-0 in overtime in the championship game. Junior Maddy Murphy scored the game-winning goal 23 seconds into overtime. 
• It was Iowa’s sixth Big Ten Tournament title and the first time in school history the Hawkeyes have swept the regular season and conference championship. 
•  Three Hawkeyes — Katie Birch, Sophie Sunderland, and Lokke Stribos — were named to the All-Big Ten Tournament Team. Birch was the Big Ten Tournament MVP.

FFI footer