Indiana women’s soccer will take on Ohio State Thursday night as the first half of a two-game homestand. The Hoosiers return to Bloomington after two road losses at Minnesota on Sept. 22 and Wisconsin Sept. 25.
The Hoosiers are undefeated at home this season, boasting a 2-0-3 record. Still, Indiana will have its work cut out against a 6-2-2 Ohio State squad, especially after losing its best player.
Indiana sophomore goalkeeper Jamie Gerstenberg is required to sit out one game after being issued a red card after a kick to the face at Wisconsin. Graduate student Bethany Kopel took Gerstenberg’s spot against the Badgers and will likely earn the start against the Buckeyes.
Kopel recorded a shutout this season against Trine University, but she struggled against Wisconsin after allowing two quick goals in the first half. The Indiana defense has been impressive throughout all of 2022, but without its star goalie, the defensive line will have to return to its early-season strength to shut out the Buckeyes.
Ohio State, who received votes in the United Soccer Coaches Poll this week, is coming off a 2-0 win against Iowa on Sept. 25. The Buckeyes’ only losses this season have come against ranked teams: No. 9 Brigham Young University on Aug. 26 and No. 4 Rutgers on Sept. 18.
Senior forward Emma Sears and junior midfielder Peyton McNamara have led Ohio State’s offense thus far. Sears and McNamara have combined for eight goals and three assists for 19 total points this season.
Buckeye graduate goalkeeper Kat Robinson and freshman Molly Pritchard split time in the net against Iowa on Sunday, but Pritchard is the team’s primary goalie. She has played in all 10 of Ohio State’s games, collecting 16 saves and 4 wins with a 0.842 save percentage.
Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. at Bill Armstrong Stadium and will be broadcast on BTN+.