Junior Danica Deckard
Nov. 2, 2011
COLUMBUS, Ohio - After finishing tied for second in the conference standings, the No. 15 Ohio State field hockey team heads to the 2011 Big Ten Tournament this week in State College, Pa., as the No. 2 seed. The Buckeyes (11-7, 4-2 Big Ten) will face No. 7 seed Michigan State at approximately 12:15 p.m. Thursday in the tournament's second game at the Penn State Field Hockey Complex in State College, Pa.
FOLLOW THE BUCKEYES
To stay up to date on Buckeye field hockey, follow the team on its official Facebook page at www.facebook.com/OhioStateFieldHockey. Fans can also follow the squad on Twitter here: @OhioState_FH.
Information on the 2011 Big Ten Field Hockey Tournament can be found on the official tournament central page at www.gopsusports.com. The schedule of events, team information, bracket breakdown, Gametracker links and stats can all be found on the tournament page. A link to Gametracker also can be found on the schedule page of Buckeye field hockey at OhioStateBuckeyes.com.
BREAKING DOWN THE TOURNAMENT
The Buckeyes earned the No. 2 seed in the tournament with a 4-2 conference record, while Michigan claimed the conference regular season title with a 5-1 record to earn the No. 1 seed and an automatic spot in the semifinals. The Scarlet and Gray will face No. 7 seed Michigan State, while No. 4 seed Iowa and No. 5 seed Indiana will open the tournament at 10 a.m. Thursday. No. 3 seed Penn State will take on No. 6 seed Northwestern at approximately 2:30 p.m. in the final game of the first day.
The top-seeded Wolverines will face the winner of the matchup between Iowa and Indiana at 10 a.m. Friday. The second semifinal game will be the winner of the Ohio State-Michigan State and Penn State-Northwestern at approximately noon Friday. The tournament championship game will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday. The semifinals and final will be televised live by BTN.
OHIO STATE IN THE BIG TEN TOURNAMENT
Ohio State has a 16-16 all-time record at the Big Ten Tournament and is 14-14 at the event under the direction of Anne Wilkinson. The Buckeyes have won the tournament in 2001 and have appeared in the championship game three times (2001, 2008 and 2010). Last year, the Scarlet and Gray fell, 2-1 against Michigan in the championship game Nov. 7 in Evanston, Ill.
BUCKEYES IN THE BIG TEN
With its second-place finish in the Big Ten regular season standings, Ohio State has now claimed a Top 3 mark in the conference 11 times since 16th-year head coach Anne Wilkinson took over the program before the start of the 1996 campaign.
As a team, Ohio State ranks first overall in the conference in defensive saves (12) and third in goals-against average (1.40) and goals allowed (1.50). In Big Ten games, the Buckeyes are first in defensive saves (5), second in goals-against average (1.24) and goals allowed (1.33) and tied for second in shots per game (14.33).
Overall, junior forward Danica Deckard is second in the conference in game-winning goals (5), third in shots per game (4.88), tied for fifth in goals (11), seventh in goals per game (0.65), eighth in points per game (1.41) and tied for eighth in points (24). Junior forward Berta Queralt is tied for eighth in points (24) and goals (10) and tied for ninth in points per game (1.33). Senior back Jenn Sciulli is first in the conference in defensive saves (9), while senior goalkeeper Ally Tunitis is tied for second in shutouts (3) and third in goals-against average (1.44).
BUCKEYES IN A NUTSHELL
Junior forwards Berta Queralt and Danica Deckard lead the squad with 24 points. Deckard has claimed a team-high 11 goals, while Queralt has tallied 10 scores this season. Senior back Jenn Sciulli has 14 points with a team-high six assists, while junior back Laura Napolitano (3g, 3a) and sophomore Paula Pastor-Pitarque (3g, 3a) have posted nine points. Senior goalkeeper Ally Tunitis is 11-7 overall with a 1.44 goals-against average. As a team, Ohio State is averaging 15.0 shots per game, while allowing just 1.50 goals per game, which is third in the Big Ten. The Buckeyes lead the league in defensive saves with 12 stops.
OHIO STATE AT NO. 15 IN THE NATIONAL POLLS
Ohio State moved to No. 15 in the Kookaburra/NFHCA Division I Poll released Tuesday by the National Field Hockey Coaches Association. Six Big Ten programs received votes in the ninth 2011 national standings with seventh-ranked Michigan leading the way followed by ninth-ranked Penn State and No. 11 Iowa. The Buckeyes are tenth in the nation in RPI, which is third in the Big Ten.
NAPOLITANO NAMED DEFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK
Junior back Laura Napolitano was named Big Ten Defensive Player of the Week, the conference announced Tuesday evening. Napolitano, a native of Cincinnati, Ohio, helped lead the squad to a 3-1 victory at Northwestern Oct. 28 with a goal in the team's regular season finale. The OSU back claims her first weekly honor of her career and has a career-high nine points on three goals and three assists. As a team, Ohio State has three conference weekly honors in 2011.
The Buckeyes hold a 7-1 record away from Columbus in 2011. Danica Deckard leads the team on the road with 14 points (6g, 2a), while Berta Queralt has collected nine points (3g, 3a). Senior goalkeeper Ally Tunitis has a 0.56 goals-against average on the road with an .848 save percentage. The team claimed a 2-1 victory vs. Richmond Sept. 3 in the lone neutral match of the regular season.
Here is a breakdown of the team's comparison vs. opponents on the road:
• 20-5 advantage in goals scored
• 153-66 lead in shots
• 84-41 advantage in penalty corners
• 19.1 shots per game, while limiting opponents to 8.2 shots per game
OHIO STATE VS. OPPONENTS
The Buckeyes lead their opponents in multiple statistical categories:
• 35-27 advantage in goals scored
• 165-110 lead in shots on goal
• 15.0-11.4 advantage in shots per game
• 131-109 lead in penalty corners
QUEARLT, DECKARD LEAD BUCKEYES
Juniors Berta Queralt and Danica Deckard have combined to score 48 of the Buckeyes' 91 points this season. Queralt and Deckard, who both have 24 points, have been major factors in the team's stretch of nine wins in 11 games, collecting a combined 37 points. Deckard leads the team with eight multi-point performances followed by Queralt with seven games of two points or more in a game.
SCIULLI TIES OSU STARTS RECORD
Jenn Sciulli, a native of Palmyra, Pa., tied former Buckeye and teammate Bri Doak (2007-10) for first on the OSU all-time list with 82 career starts in the 3-1 win at Northwestern Oct. 28. The OSU captain has started every collegiate game for the Scarlet and Gray and has played more than 5,700 minutes in the Buckeye backfield.
TUNITIS IN THE RECORD BOOKS
Senior tri-captain Ally Tunitis is tied for third on the OSU all-time career goalkeeper wins list with 36 victories since joining the program in 2008. The native of Macungie, Pa., Tunitis holds the single-season wins record set last season with 18 victories en route to the program's first NCAA semifinal appearance. The Buckeye goalkeeper also holds the OSU career goals-against average record with a 1.38 mark in 3,663 minutes played (third-most). With the 2-0 shutout at Penn State Oct. 22, Tunitis is now third in career shutouts with 13 overall, passing former OSU goalkeeper Kim Willis (1985-87).
FOUR GAMES, 15 POINTS FOR DECKARD
Junior forward Danica Deckard claimed a four-game point streak from Sept. 16-Oct. 4, collecting 15 points on seven goals and one assist in four OSU victories. Against then-No. 11 Michigan Sept. 23, Deckard tallied both goals, including the gamewinner with less than two minutes remaining in regulation. The native of Selinsgrove, Pa., continued her hot streak Sept. 27 at Ball State when she posted career highs in points (7) and goals (3) in the first hat trick of her career. The speedy forward was rewarded for her clutch play against the Wolverines when she was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week Sept. 27 - the first of conference weekly laurel of her career.
Deckard knocked in her eighth goal of the campaign in the opening minutes of a 3-2 victory against then-No. 13 Indiana Sept. 30 in Columbus. Deckard posted the team's second goal against No. 20 Louisville Oct. 4 at Buckeye Varsity Field. The four-game point streak tied her career high set in 2010.
Senior captain Jenn Sciulli claimed her ninth defensive save (career high) in a 2-1 loss at Michigan State Oct. 14. The Buckeye back leads the conference in defensive saves and is second in the nation in defensive stops. A native of Palmyra, Pa., Sciulli now has 23 career saves and is second on the OSU all-time list. On the other side of turf, the OSU back leads the team in assists with six helpers this season.
SCOUTING THE SPARTANS
The Spartans head to State College, Pa., with a 7-12 overall record. Last time out, Michigan State fell, 4-1, at Penn State in its regular season finale. Offensively, the Spartans are led by Abby Barker who has posted 17 points on eight goals and one assist. MSU goalkeeper Molly Cassidy is 7-12 overall with a 2.96 goals-against average and a .753 save percentage.
OHIO STATE VS. MICHIGAN STATE
The Buckeyes lead the all-time series, 18-4, against the Spartans. Last time out, Ohio State fell, 2-1, in strokes at Michigan State Oct. 14. The Scarlet and Gray defeated Michigan State, 2-0, in the semifinals of the 2010 Big Ten Tournament Nov. 5, 2010, in Evanston, Ill.
Last Five Meetings...
Oct. 14, 2011 - Michigan State, Ohio State 1 (2OT)
Nov. 5, 2010 - Ohio State 2, Michigan State 0
Oct. 15, 2010 - Ohio State 5, Michigan State 1
Oct. 23, 2009 - Michigan State 2, Ohio State 1
Sept. 26, 2008 - Michigan State 3, Ohio State 1
100 POINTS AND COUNTING...
Junior captain Berta Queralt had a game to remember in the 4-3 overtime victory against Wake Forest Sept. 16 in Columbus. The OSU forward tallied four goals on eight points (career-highs), including the gamewinner in extra time vs. the Demon Deacons. With her eight-point performance, the native of Barcelona, Spain, became the ninth Buckeye in program history to collect at least 100 career points. Queralt, a two-time All-American, is currently sixth in the record books with 117 points.
Queralt leads the squad with 24 points and has posted 10 goals and four assists. The eight-point performance by Queralt is tied for first in the Big Ten in individual game-highs with Kelsey Amy of Penn State and Kim Scraper of Iowa, who also claimed eight-point performances earlier this season.
UNDERCLASSMEN GAINING EXPERIENCE
Five Buckeye underclassmen have started in all 18 games this season, including sophomores Paula Pastor-Pitarque, Arielle Cowie, Nora Murer and Christina Shea and freshman Kaitlyn Wagner. The four sophomores have a combined 127 starts since joining the squad during the 2010 season.
Along with Wagner, freshman Carly Mackessy has started in the last 13 games for the Scarlet and Gray. Sophomore Maria Swartz has played in 17 games this season and has seen more than 40 minutes of action in the last four games.
SCIULLI NAMED TO NFHCA ALL-STAR SQUAD
Jenn Sciulli has been invited to play in the 2011 NFHCA Division I Senior All-Star Game, the National Field Hockey Coaches Association announced Tuesday. Sciulli, who is second in the nation in defensive stops with nine in 2011, will play at the event held at 3 p.m. Nov. 19 at the University of Louisville in Louisville, Ky.