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Bethany Kopel earns Big Ten honors after impressive week


Then-freshman goalkeeper Bethany Kopel gets in position against Iowa at Bill Armstrong Stadium. The IU women's soccer team lost to Nebraska in overtime, 4-3, and will play at Iowa on Sunday.  Bobby Goddin Buy Photos

IU women’s soccer goalkeeper Bethany Kopel earned Big Ten Freshman of the Week honors after season-saving performances against Iowa and Nebraska this past week.

“She’s playing like you’d never know that she was a freshman back there,” IU Coach Amy Berbary said. “She has the confidence, she has such a presence and such a good voice, and our backline has confidence, really our whole team has confidence in her. I really can’t say enough about her, and she continues to get better every week.”

Kopel currently sits third in the Big Ten and 34th nationally in total saves with 82. The Novi, Michigan, native also leads the country in goalkeeper minutes played with more than 1,600 minutes.

She recorded a career-high 12 saves on 22 shots against Iowa last Thursday night, the most for a Hoosier since 2012.

The performance propelled IU to a 2-1 victory, its first win since Sept. 14. 

After the standout performance, Kopel made crucial saves down the stretch against Nebraska to force a 1-1 draw, allowing IU to pick up four points on the weekend.

The weekly honors were the first for a Hoosier this season and the first in Kopel’s young career. 

Up next for IU will be a home match against Rutgers on Saturday night.

Phillip Steinmetz

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