No. 3 Rutgers women’s field hockey (18-3) won the programs first ever Big Ten Tournament championship on Sunday with a 1-0 victory over No. 2 Michigan (15-4). The Scarlet Knights achieve glory in front of a Big Ten Championship Game record attendance of 1,617.
The Scarlet Knights avenged a 3-0 defeat to the Wolverines just over two weeks ago in Ann Arbor. After wins over Indiana and Penn State to advance to the finals, RU was able to secure the Big Ten Tournament title behind stifling defense and timely scoring.
Michigan controlled the action most of the game but it was RU’s Tayla Parkes who scored the game’s only goal in the 24th minute off an assist from Bridy Molyneaux.
Michigan was relentless in attacking and outshot Rutgers 12-3 overall and 4-2 on goal. However, Kerrie Burns led a defense that never surrendered even as the Wolverines played with an extra player the final five minutes of the game after pulling their goalkeeper. Big Ten Co-Player of the Year Gianna Glatz made four saves.
Burns was named tournament MVP honors while Glatz earned All-Tournament team honors.
“It’s incredible. I’m so proud of this team and this group of players,” head coach Meredith Civico said. “We knew this game was going to be an absolute physical battle. We played 60 minutes of gritty, relentless Rutgers field hockey. It’s been such a process and we have great players and great people in our program. We’ve been building this and working towards this for a long time. To have this season and this group of players who are so talented and so gritty, so committed to the team, is a really special thing. To win this championship at home, at Rutgers, with this team, it doesn’t get any better than this.”
“It feels incredible,” Kerrie Burns said. “It’s so great to have Rutgers field hockey get that recognition that the program deserves. We were strong on defense all game, everyone working together to get the win.”
“We have worked so hard up to this point,” Katie Larmour said. “It feels unbelievable. This validates everything that I’ve stayed here for. All the girls on the team have worked so hard to bring it to this point. It makes all those long hours worthwhile.”
“It feels amazing,” Gianna Glatz said. “It’s everything we’ve worked for over the last five years. We worked so hard for this. It’s finally here now and we’re living that dream.”
Rutgers has set the following program record so far this season: 18 wins, 12 wins against ranked foes, 7 ranked road wins, 6 Big Ten regular season wins, a best ever second place finish in the Big Ten, a first ever Big Ten Tournament win and now the first ever Big Ten Tournament title.
RU earned the Big Ten’s automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament with the victory. It will be the program’s fourth NCAA Tournament appearance in school history after previous bids in 1984, 1986 and 2018.
The Scarlet Knights earned the No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament and will host the winner of Delaware/Fairfield on Friday, November 12. Our full story is here.