Birch, Murphy Named NFHCA All-Americans

IOWA CITY, Iowa — Two University of Iowa field hockey student-athletes — Katie Birch and Maddy Murphy — earned NFHCA All-American status, the National Field Hockey Coaches Association (NFHCA) announced Tuesday. Birch, a senior midfielder, was named to the first team, while Murphy, a junior forward, was named to the second team.

The two Hawkeyes are the 93rd and 94th national All-Americans in program history. It’s Birch’s third career national All-American honor and Murphy’s second. Birch is the seventh Hawkeye in program history to be a three-time national All-American.

Murphy and Birch helped lead Iowa to a 17-5 (7-1) record, including a trip to the Elite Eight after claiming Big Ten regular season and Big Ten Tournament titles in the same season for the first time in program history. Murphy scored Iowa’s game-winning overtime goal in the Big Ten Championship game, and Birch was named Big Ten Tournament MVP.

Birch tied her career-high of 10 assists and scored seven goals for 24 points for the Hawkeyes. The York, England, native was also a key part of Iowa’s defense that allowed only 27 goals in 22 games. Birch’s other postseason honors include NFHCA West Region Player of the Year, first-team All-West region, and unanimous first-team All-Big Ten.

Murphy recorded a team-leading 12 goals and 13 assists, combining for 37 points, both of which ranked top-five in the Big Ten. A native of Raina, Tasmania, Murphy also earned first-team All-West and first-team All-Big Ten honors for her outstanding play.

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