COLUMBUS, Ohio - The 17th-ranked Ohio State women's soccer team hosts 13th-ranked Illinois at 7:30 p.m. Thursday on Buckeyes Go Pink night at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. President Gee will be on hand to join the Buckeyes in the fight against breast cancer.
Last week, the Buckeyes snapped Wisconsin's 930-minute shutout streak in a 1-0 victory over the Badgers Friday before coming back to top 15th-ranked Minnesota 2-1 in overtime Sunday. Freshman goalkeeper Rachel Middleman recorded her sixth shutout of the season against Wisconsin while Lauren Granberg gave the Buckeyes the win 43 seconds into overtime against the Golden Gophers.
- The Buckeyes took 40 shots in the win over Cleveland State. It is the most shots in a game for the Buckeyes going back through the 2003 season and 10 short of the program record of 50 set in a 14-0 win over Robert Morris in 1995. The 40 shots also mark the most by any Big Ten team in a game this season.
- The Buckeyes have outscored their opponents 27-6 since the 2-1 season-opening loss against Wisconsin-Milwaukee.
- Ohio State has outshot its opponents 240-127 including 111-44 on goal.
- Sixteen Buckeyes have recorded a point in 2010. Only the 2004 (19) and 2009 (18) teams have had more players contribute offensively.
BUCKS IN THE BIG TEN
- As a team, Ohio State ranks in the top three in the Big Ten in goals per game (1.87, 3rd), assists per game (2.20, 2nd), goals allowed (8, t-3rd), goals-against average (0.50, 3rd), shutouts (8, 3rd) and corner kicks (92, t-3rd).
- The Buckeyes also rank second in the Big Ten in scoring margin, outscoring their opponents by 1.33 goals per game.
- Paige Maxwell sits third in the conference with eight goals, is tied for second with four game-winning goals and leads with six goals in Big Ten play.
- Three Buckeyes rank in the top 10 in the conference in assists: Lauren Steuer (7, 2nd), Tiffany Cameron (5, t-3rd) and Liz Sullivan (4, t-9th).
- Rachel Middleman leads the conference with a 0.38 goals-against average and ranks third with an .861 save percentage and six shutouts. The freshman ranks fifth and 27th nationally in goals-against average and save percentage, respectively.
- With 10 goals in six conference matchups, the Buckeyes are tied with Penn State for the most in Big Ten play. The Buckeyes have allowed just two goals in those six games, ranking second in conference play.
SCOUTING THE FIGHTING ILLINI
Led by ninth-year head coach Janet Rayfield, Illinois is off to a 10-2-1 start, sitting in a tie for fourth place in the Big Ten with a 3-1-1 record. Freshman forward Vanessa DiBernardo ranks second in the Big Ten with eight goals and 20 points while senior goalkeeper Alexandra Kapicka ranks fourth in the Big Ten with a 0.55 goals-against average and has recorded four shutouts.
The Buckeyes hold a 7-6-0 lead in the all-time series after defeating Illinois 3-0 last season in Champaign.
BUCKEYES IN THE RANKINGS
Ohio State appears in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America (NSCAA) poll for the first time this week, checking in at the 17th spot and first in the Great Lakes region. The Buckeyes are 14th in this week's rankings by Soccer America, 16th by SoccerTimes.com and 17th by TopDrawerSoccer.com. The only Big Ten team ranked higher in the NSCAA poll is Illinois (13th) while Minnesota (23rd) also is ranked.
DOING IT ALL OVER AGAIN
The Buckeyes' 12-2-1 record is the best start in school history. In 2009, Ohio State started 11-2-2 and went on to finish 14-4-2, reaching the NCAA tournament and tying for the fewest losses in school history.
THE COACHING STAFF
Ohio State is under the direction of 14th-year head coach Lori Walker. She has guided the team to five NCAA tournament berths (2002-03-04-07-09) as well as two Big Ten tournament championships (2002 and 2004). Greg Miller is in his third season as associate head coach and 10th overall with the Buckeyes. The 2010 season marks the third season for assistant coach Glen Tourville and the first for student assistant coach Lauren Robertson.
BUCKEYES IN THE RPI
In the Ratings Percentage Index (RPI) rankings published by the NCAA Oct. 19, Ohio State sits eighth nationally and tops in the Big Ten ahead of 23rd-ranked Minnesota and 32nd-ranked Wisconsin. The RPI will be released every Tuesday for the remainder of the regular season.
MIDDLEMAN FRESHMAN OF THE WEEK
Goalkeeper Rachel Middleman was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week Oct. 18 after the Buckeyes knocked off Wisconsin and No. 15 Minnesota. The Mars, Pa., native recorded her sixth shutout of the season and fourth in Big Ten play, making three saves in the Buckeyes' 1-0 victory over Wisconsin Friday. Middleman came back Sunday to record the win in a come-from-behind 2-1 overtime victory over No. 15 Minnesota Sunday afternoon.
MAXWELL PICKS UP POW #2 OF 2010
Junior forward Paige Maxwell was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week for the second time in three weeks after scoring a pair of goals, including the game-winner, in the Buckeyes' 3-1 victory Oct. 8 at Iowa. She came back Sunday and scored the game-winner in the 99th minute of a 1-0 overtime win at Northwestern Oct. 10. The Medina, Ohio, native also was named to the TopDrawerSoccer.com team of the week.
MAXWELL EARNS POW HONOR
Junior forward Paige Maxwell was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week Sept. 27 after scoring the game-winner in the 85th minute of the Buckeyes' 2-0 win over Michigan Sept. 26.
MARTIN BIG TEN OFFENSIVE POW
Junior forward Caitlyn Martin was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week Sept. 13 after scoring both Ohio State goals in a 2-0 win over Cleveland State Sept. 8.
MIDDLEMAN NAMED TOP FRESHMAN
Goalkeeper Rachel Middleman was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week Sept. 6 after 165 scoreless minutes in goal in a pair of shutout victories over Dayton and Akron.
GRANBERG NAMED BIG TEN POW
Sophomore Lauren Granberg was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week Aug. 30 after her two-goal effort against West Virginia. She scored both the game-tying and game-winning goals just over a minute apart against the Mountaineers. The Edmonton, Alberta, native also was named a collegesoccer360.com Primetime Performer of the Week for her efforts.
Head coach Lori Walker picked up her 150th win at Ohio State in the Buckeyes' 3-1 win at Iowa Oct. 8.
A CANADIAN INFLUENCE
The three Canadians on the Ohio State roster have played a huge role in the Buckeyes' hot start in 2010. Tiffany Cameron (4g, 5a) and Lauren Granberg (4g) are tied for the team lead in goals while the third Canadian, freshman Danica Wu (2a), has played in all 15 games and started 12 in the midfield.
DICKERSON ON M.A.C. HERMANN LIST
Defender Cassie Dickerson was named to the M.A.C. Hermann Trophy watch list, the Missouri Athletic Club announced.
The senior from Kalamazoo, Mich. was named a first team All-Big Ten and All-Great Lakes Region selection in 2009 after starting 19 games at center back for the Buckeyes. A Big Ten Sportsmanship Award honoree, the three-time captain played the second-most minutes on the team, scoring a goal and adding a pair of assists on the season.
It marks the second time in program history a Buckeye was named to the Hermann Trophy watch list after Lara Dickenmann was selected in 2007. The award is considered the highest individual honor in collegiate soccer.
Cassie Dickerson was named a team captain for the third-consecutive season and is joined by defenders Lauren Beachy and Danielle Scoliere. The trio has combined for 148 career starts.
AT HOME AT JESSE OWENS
Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium has proved to be a more than advantageous home for the Buckeyes in its 11 years of existence. Consider:
- The home team is 80-32-10 all-time.
- Ohio State is 61-15-8 since 2003 and 36-10-4 since 2006.
- The Buckeyes went 9-2-0 at home in 2009 and are 6-1-1 in 2010.
The Buckeyes hit the road to face Purdue Sunday at 1 p.m. in West Lafayette, Ind.