Northwestern’s back line stopped Penn State’s circle penetration to take the 2-0 Big Ten victory

When one of the best attack field hockey players in the nation is on the opposing team, she becomes a strategic priority.


No. 1 Northwestern was effective in prioritizing Penn State’s Phia Gladieux in its contest with the No. 16 Nittany Lions in Happy Valley on Friday. The Cats remain undefeated in the Big 10 Conference and move on to play at Rutgers against the Scarlet Knights on Sunday. Penn State hosts No. 5 Iowa on Sunday, too.


Gladieux, one of the best college field hockey athletes in the nation, had her signature reverse shot taken away on several occasions. The Cats lines are full of experienced talent from the front to the back, which is what it takes to stop a phenom like Gladieux.


But, there were still 10 other athletes on the field with her and they worked just as hard to try to turn over the ball at a fast clip to outrun the Cats. However, Penn State was one or two steps off from beating Northwestern to the ball.


It was a low stats game even though most of the play occurred on either side of the field from about the 30 to the baseline. Penn State had more possessions, but Northwestern capitalized on its corners. That’s the game.



Two out of the four corners awarded were scored by Lauren Wadas. Wadas scored the team’s insurance goal in the fourth with just over 3 minutes left to play. The final tally was 2-0 Northwestern.


And, the more impressive part of the game was watching Northwestern’s goalie and backfield dictate where they wanted the ball to go.


Northwestern’s Annabel Skubisz “Scooby” was able to handle Gladieux’s shots, staving off any shift in momentum.


Penn State came out of the half ready to tear up the field. While the Nittany Lions outshot Northwestern, pulled their goalie Brie Barraco in the final two minutes and 30 seconds, playing 11 field players until the end, they still couldn’t move Skubisz enough to get her off balance for a score.


Northwestern 1-0-0-1: 2

Goals: Wadas, 2

Assists: Alia Marshall and Lauren Hunter, 1; Marshall and Peyton Halsey, 1

Shots: 8

Penalty corners: 4

Saves: Skubisz, 8


Penn State 0-0-0-0: 0

Goals: o

Assists: 0

Shots: 11

Penalty corners: 6

Saves: Barraco, 4

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