Women's Soccer To Play Final Big Ten Match Of Season

Go Buckeyes!
Go Buckeyes!

Go Buckeyes!

Oct. 18, 2000

COLUMBUS, Ohio--The Ohio State women's soccer team (5-11-0 overall, 1-8 in the Big Ten) faced a firing squad in the Michigan Wolverines Sunday and will travel to Penn State Friday for more of the same from the Nittany Lions.

Michigan took 41 shots at OSU in the Buckeyes' 3-1 loss and OSU will now face a PSU team that has unleashed 314 shots this season. OSU has taken 219.

"We knew that Michigan would be very aggressive and the number of shots they took showed that," Lori Walker, head coach for OSU, said. "Penn State has a balanced scoring attack that likes to shoot so we will have to face many more shots Friday."

Buckeye Backstop

With the Wolverines turning the field into a launching pad, Buckeye goalkeeper Amber Barnes (Sr., Fairfield, Ohio/Fairfield) had a very busy day in the net. Barnes stopped 13 of the 16 UM shots on goal and recorded the most saves in a single game in her four year career.

"She is having her best year yet, though her numbers don't really reflect it," Walker said. "She has been under tremendous stress from other teams because of the depleted defense we have in front of her."

The 13 saves Barnes recorded was the fourth-highest total in OSU history. Former Buckeye Nicole Morris (1994-96) holds the highest mark with 22 in a 4-1 loss at Wisconsin on Sept. 11, 1994.

Barnes also has made 111 saves this year, only eight away from her career-high for a single season (119). She is second in the conference in saves behind Iowa's Liz Hendel (115).

Thorpe Assists

Emily Thorpe (Jr., Cincinnati, Ohio/Sycamore) tallied two assists over the weekend, one in each match, and brought her season total to six which has her tied for fifth in the Big Ten.

Those six are the third-highest total in a single season behind Lisa Suttmiller's 8 and 7 in 1996 and 1994, respectively. ,p> Her 12 career assists also have pushed her name higher into the career books. She currently is third all-time behind Suttmiller's 23 (1994-97) and Katy Traeger's 13 (1996-99). Home Sweet Home

Kiley Enmark (So., Sterling Heights, Mich./Henry Ford II) recorded the lone goal in the 3-1 loss at Michigan Sunday. The goal was her third this year and the fifth of her career. What made it even better was that the goal was in front of her hometown crowd.

"I told the team before the (Michigan) game that scoring chances would be few," Walker said. "Kiley knew our (scoring) chances had to count and she got us ahead early. I know it was special for her because it was in front of her friends and family."

Ill-Fated Identity

Standing 1-8 in the Big Ten Conference with one game remaining, the Buckeyes will not participate in the Big Ten tournament for the first time ever. The tournament pits the Top 8 conference finishers against each other with the winner more than likely making the NCAA tournament.

Scouting Penn State

When seventh-year head coach Patrick Farmer and his No. 6 ranked PSU squad take the field Friday, his team will no longer be known as the two-time defending Big Ten champions but as the current three-time Big Ten champions. The Nittany Lions stand 14-2-1 overall and 8-0 in conference and clinched the title outright Sunday after defeating Northwestern, 1-0, at Evanston, Ill. PSU has won 10-consecutive matches.

PSU brings a very strong offense to the field. It has scored 42 goals on 314 shots this season and has seen 15 of its 23 players record at least one point.

Leading that offense is sophomore Christie Welsh. Welsh, an All-American and the National and Big Ten Freshman of the Year from a year ago, leads the conference with 15 goals and 37 points and her seven assists is third best. Welsh suffered a stress fracture in her right foot on Oct. 13 and has not played since. She will return to action at the Big Ten tournament on Nov. 2.

Also leading the scoring is freshmen Stephanie Smith and Heidi Drummond. Smith has tallied five goals (13th in Big Ten), nine assists (first) and 19 points (eighth) while Drummond has totaled seven goals (seventh), two assists and 16 points (ninth).

On defense for the Nittany Lions is another All-American from 1999, junior goalkeeper Emily Oleksiuk. Oleksiuk has allowed eight goals while recording 55 saves. She also has recorded a conference-high 8.4 shutouts and a 0.54 goals against average (second in Big Ten) in 2000.

Walker On Penn State

"They are a very skilled team. We are going to try and contain them from break-away chances on our goal and hopefully counterattack and create chances for ourselves. The way they have spread their scoring around, it will be tough to key in on a few players because of how strong they are and how difficult it is to defend them."

Ohio State vs. Penn State

Ohio State and Penn State have met seven times with PSU holding a 5-2 advantage. PSU won the last meeting, 5-0, on Oct. 22, 1999 in Columbus. OSU is 0-3 at State College, Pa. and has been out-scored 8-1.

Last Week

Ohio State fell to host Michigan, 3-1, Sunday after losing to Northwestern, 2-1, Friday.

In the loss to UM, Kiley Enmark scored the lone OSU goal with an assist going to Emily Thorpe. OSU goalkeeper Amber Barnes recorded 13 saves in a match that saw the maize and blue take 41 shots, 16 of which were on goal.

On Friday, Michelle Besson (So., Kettering, Ohio/The Miami Valley School) recorded the only OSU goal with Thorpe tallying the assist.

In both games, untimely goals made the difference. Against the Wolverines, OSU surrendered two goals in the final nine minutes as the UM pressure was relentless.

"I'm not sure why we have given up late goals," Walker said. "It is similar to the chicken-egg debate: Are we not as sharp at the end of a game because we are tired or are we tired because we were not as sharp? The relentless Michigan pressure did ware us down so that may be the reason."

In the NU match, OSU was able to rebound from an early Wildcat goal in the fifth minute. The Besson goal tied it up but a goal in the 68th minute won the game for NU.

Senior Finals

On Saturday, Oct. 28, the match with visiting Louisville will be the final game for OSU seniors Amber Barnes, Amanda Orr (Sr., Brecksville, Ohio/Broadview Heights) and Mia Katzel (Sr., Ukiah, Calif./Ukiah).

The match starts at 3 p.m. at the Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.

Up Next

The Buckeyes will return to action on the road at 3 p.m. Thursday (Oct. 26) when they play the Ohio Bobcats at Athens, Ohio. OSU will finish its season at 3 p.m. Saturday (Oct. 28) against the Louisville Cardinals at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.