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No. 6 Rutgers field hockey splits weekend to move to 9-2 overall

Rutgers Athletics

No. 6 Rutgers field hockey had a compelling weekend with a two game homestand against Big Ten foes. On Friday, the Scarlet Knights gave the No. 1 Iowa Hawkeyes all they could handle before falling 2-1. Less than 48 hours later, RU scored a dramatic goal with just seconds remaining double overtime to defeat Indiana 1-0. They are now 2-1 in Big Ten play and 9-2 overall this season.

After a scoreless first quarter against the top ranked team in the country, Iowa scored twice in the span of 16 seconds in the second quarter. Rutgers had three consecutive corners in the third quarter, but were unable to capitalize. They continued to fight and Kerrie Burns scored off an assist from Gianna Mancini at the start of the fourth quarter to make it a one goal game. It broke Iowa’s streak of eight consecutive shutouts.

Unfortunately, Rutgers failed to produce the equalizer and lost 2-1. It was a heartbreaking defeat considering RU held a 9-5 shot advantage and a 5-2 edge with corners. The Scarlet Knights are also just one of three opponents to hold Iowa to two goals or less this season. Despite the tough loss, Rutgers should gain confidence in knowing how much they tested the top team in the country. They could meet again in Piscataway in November as Rutgers hosts the Big Ten Tournament. RU is now 7-2 against ranked foes this season.

On Sunday, the Scarlet Knights were in a scoreless battle the entire way until the final minute of double overtime. Iris Langejans started the play near midfield and Katie Larmour was able to find Lucy Bannatyne inside the circle. She then passed it to Gianna Mancini, who fired home the game winning goal from close range with just 30 seconds left on the clock. It was Mancini’s fourth goal of the season and Bannatyne delivered the first assist of her career.

Rutgers dominated the action against the Hoosiers, holding a 16-3 shot advantage, including 7-1 with shots on goal, as well as a 13-3 edge in penalty corners. The defense dominated and Gianna Glatz made her only save near the end of regulation for her second shutout of the season.

Rutgers has now beaten Indiana five times in a row and hold a 9-2 all-time series lead.

“We had to dig in and find a way to win today against a good Big Ten team in Indiana,” said head coach Meredith Civico. “I am proud of the effort in nearly an 80-minute battle, especially our response to Friday’s result in a close loss to the No. 1 team in the country. We’re excited to get back to work this week and get ready for Penn State.”

No. 6 Rutgers will likely be in another top ten battle this Friday, October 8 against No. 8 Penn State (8-2; 3-1). The game is in Happy Valley and set for a 4 p.m. start. It’s a key conference matchup for both teams and the Nittany Lions will look for redemption after losing twice to the Scarlet Knights in the spring.