Ohio State to Host Butler in NCAA First Round
Kick is set for 6 p.m. Saturday
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COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio State women’s soccer team has been selected to host Butler in the first round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday in Columbus. The match is slated for 6 p.m. at Bert L. & Iris S. Wolstein Field at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
“We’re very happy to be hosting and playing in our own stadium,” Lori Walker, Ohio State head coach, said. “We’ve had some time to recover from our conference tournament and we’re excited to be hosting Butler. Our objective is to always get better and we feel like we’ve learned some important lessons about ourselves the last few weeks. Now it’s about individual flair shining within our system and we look forward to our opportunity.”
Ohio State enters the NCAA Tournament with an 11-6-3 overall record, 5-4-2 in Big Ten play. The Buckeyes will be playing in their 10th NCAA Tournament and sixth in the last seven seasons. Ohio State is 9-8-2 all-time in NCAA play, all under the direction of Walker. Ohio State has won both meetings against the Bulldogs, including a 3-0 season-opening win in the last matchup in 2007.
Nichelle Prince (6g, 6a) and Michela Paradiso (6g, 2a) pace a balanced Ohio State offense that has four players tallying 14 or more points and five players with four or more goals. Goalkeeper Devon Kerr has played in 13 matches, starting five, and has tallied a 0.89 goals-against average with a 5-1-1 record in goal.
“I don’t think we’re happy with how our conference tournament ended,” Morgan Wolcott, redshirt junior defender and co-captain, said. “We’ve continued to improve as the season has gone on but this is another chance for us to prove ourselves and the NCAA Tournament is a great opportunity to do so.”
Butler is 16-6-1 on the year and topped Providence to win the Big East championship Sunday. Forward Halle Stelbasky leads the Bulldogs with nine goals while Sophia Maccagnone has added seven goals and five assists. Goalkeeper Madison Card has posted a 0.92 goals-against average with nine clean sheets.
The ACC put 10 teams in the NCAA Tournament, the most of any conference nationally, while the SEC and Pac-12 followed with six teams each. Five Big Ten teams advanced to NCAA play including Penn State, Rutgers, Minnesota and Northwestern. Florida and West Virginia, two more 2015 opponents of the Buckeyes, also qualified for the NCAA Tournament.
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