IOWA CITY, Iowa – University of Iowa field hockey senior Anthe Nijziel has been named the Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week for the second straight week, it was announced Tuesday by the league office. It is the third such honor of Nijziel’s career.
The Eindhoven, Netherlands, native earned the distinction after tallying four points and anchoring an Iowa defense that posted back-to-back shutouts in two victories over No. 6 Penn State last weekend at Grant Field. Nijziel played all 120 minutes and the Hawkeyes allowed just four Nittany Lion shots on goal in the two games.
Nijziel scored the game-winning goal — her first of the season — in the 1-0 victory on Sept. 24 before tallying two assists in the 4-0 victory Sept. 26 to hand Penn State its first two losses of the season.
The two shutouts ran the Hawkeyes’ streak to eight consecutive clean sheets, the longest stretch in program history. Iowa hasn’t allowed a goal in 515:20 minutes of game time dating back to Aug. 27 against No. 1 North Carolina and the team has allowed just 12 shots on goal during the stretch.
The Hawkeyes are a perfect 10-0 this season — the program’s best start since 1999 — with five of the team’s 10 wins coming over top-11 ranked opponents (No. 1 North Carolina, No. 5 Louisville, No. 6 Penn State (2), No. 11 Wake Forest).
Iowa has earned three Big Ten weekly honors this season. Senior Maddy Murphy was selected as the Offensive Player of the Week on Aug. 30 and Nijziel earned Defensive Player of the Week honors on Sept. 20 and Sept. 28.
The top-ranked Hawkeyes open a four-game road trip Friday, traveling to Piscataway, New Jersey, to face No. 6 Rutgers at 2 p.m. (CT). The game will be streamed live on BTN+.