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Wednesday, Nov. 29
The Indiana Daily Student

sports field hockey

Hoosiers end year with loss to Iowa

Just 1:39 into its first-round Big Ten Tournament game, Iowa scored a goal against a broken IU defense. Less than two minutes later, the Hawkeyes added a second goal after intercepting a poor Hoosier pass.

With that, the game was all but over.

No. 2 seed Iowa went on to a 5-2 win Thursday morning in Bloomington, knocking the No. 7 seed Hoosiers out of the conference tournament for the second year in a row.

“If we could take away the first five minutes, we’d have been right in the game,” junior forward Alina Valenti said.

Iowa forward Sarah Pergine played a crucial role in both of the early goals.

On the first goal, Pergine stood wide open in the scoring circle and took advantage of a one-on-one opportunity with IU sophomore goalkeeper Alex Mann, putting the ball into the left corner of the goal.

Minutes later, Pergine intercepted a slow Hoosier pass near IU’s goal. She passed the ball to teammate Caitlin McCurdy, who scored for the 2-0 lead.

“We sort of beat ourselves,” IU coach Amy Robertson said. “We gave Iowa some opportunities; you just don’t want to give your opponent.”

Despite the momentum-crushing opening, IU senior back Dani Castro scored in the 22nd minute off a penalty corner, deflecting a shot from sophomore midfielder Kelsey Kiper into the goal.

However, the Hawkeyes responded quickly, as back Lauren Pfeiffer scored on Iowa’s second penalty corner of the game a minute later.

Iowa added two more goals before the half, including a second goal from Pfeiffer.
Pfeiffer, who also scored two goals against the Hoosiers in their regular-season meeting, finished the game with six shots, four of which were on goal.

Down 5-1 entering the second half, the Hoosiers outplayed the Hawkeyes for the final 35 minutes, Robertson said.

Valenti scored a goal in the 37th minute off a rebound on a penalty corner, the only score by either team in the second half.

Robertson, who remained upbeat after the loss, tried to find something positive to take from the game and spoke of her team’s second-half play.

“We finished on a high note,” she said. “I always look at each half as a game, and we won the second game. In a way, if you want to look at it, we end with a win.”

IU (7-11) ended its second consecutive season with a first-round loss to Iowa in the Big Ten Tournament.

Despite graduating, Castro said she is excited for the rest of her team as she reflected on the entire season.

“Our record doesn’t show how much heart we have, how much talent we are capable of and didn’t show our potential,” Castro said. “I think next year, they are going to be amazing.”

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