Ohio State defense blocks No. 10 Northwestern offense in upset
COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio State defended its home turf Friday, upsetting No. 10 Northwestern 3-2. After the Wildcats (8-2) scored an early goal, the Buckeyes (6-3) tallied two goals in the first half and followed with a third late in the second to win.
Ohio State has now won four-consecutive games and jumps to the top of the standings to begin the conference schedule. The OSU win snaps a six-game winning streak for the Wildcats. The Buckeye backfield limited Northwestern to eight shots.
“Our team defense was the difference today,” head coach Anne Wilkinson said. “We were able to shut them down early and the preparation by our players was great heading into the game. Northwestern has a strong offensive attack. This is a great win to start the conference schedule and we will need to continue our momentum Sunday vs. Missouri State.”
Offensively, senior captain Berta Queralt led the charge with three points on a goal and an assist, while fellow captain Danica Deckard scored a goal. Sophomore back Kaitlyn Wagner scored her first career goal and was assisted by junior Maria Swartz, who earned her first career point. Sophomore Mona Frommhold collected a point as well.
In the first half, Northwestern struck first when senior forward Chelsea Armstrong scored from the top of the circle off a corner at 2:54.
The teams then battled back and forth for possession until the Buckeyes scored an unassisted goal at 19:39 by Queralt – her third of the season. The goal tied the match at one.
Ten minutes later, Wagner slapped in a shot off a reverse pass by Swartz to give the team a 2-1 lead. Ohio State held a 6-3 lead in shots and a 3-2 advantage in corners in the first 35 minutes.
In the second half, both teams continued to battle keeping the score 2-1 until the final five minutes of regulation. After Northwestern pulled its goalkeeper with 6:22 remaining, the Buckeyes took advantage and were able to gain a corner with the empty net. Deckard fired a goal at 66:39 to extend the lead to 3-1.
Armstrong was able to cut the Wildcat’s deficit to 3-2, but Northwestern didn't get another possession before time expired.
Junior goalkeeper Emma Voelker improves to 6-3 overall, posting three saves. Ohio State outshot Northwestern 12-8 and had a 6-4 lead in penalty corners.