Junior forward Shayla Mutz helped Illinois earn a come-from-behind tie with Iowa, using her head to tally Illinois' second goal of the game.
Sept. 22, 2011
Game 10: #22 Illinois (6-2-1, 0-0-1) at (RV) Ohio State (5-3-1, 0-0-1)
Friday, Sept. 23 // 6:30 p.m. CT // Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium // Columbus, Ohio
Live Statistics: Available on fightingillini.com
Web Streaming: Available on ohiostatebuckeyes.com
Live Radio: Available on ohiostatesports.net
The all-time series is tied at 7-7. (Last meeting: #13 Illinois 2, #17 Ohio State 1; Oct. 21, 2010)
Game 11: #22 Illinois at (RV) Penn State (7-3-0, 0-1-0)
Sunday, Sept. 25 // 1 p.m. CT // Jeffrey Field // University Park, Pa.
Live Statistics: Available on fightingillini.com
Penn State leads the all-time series, 19-2. (Last meeting: Penn State 2, #13 Illinois 0; Oct. 24, 2010)
Just For Kicks
... scored five or more goals in three consecutive games (Gonzaga, Toledo, Ball State) for the first time in program history.
... scored five or more goals in four separate games for the first time since 2000.
... has won its last 69 games when scoring three or more goals, dating back to 1999.
... is 6-1-1 when scoring at least two goals in a game and 4-0-1 in day games.
... finished 6-2-0 in non-conference play, the fifth consecutive and 13th overall season Illinois started the Big Ten schedule with a winning non-conference mark.
Fighting Illini Media Coverage
The University of Illinois soccer squad will receive considerable coverage from local and regional media outlets throughout the 2011 regular season, with live broadcasts of contests featured on the Big Ten Network and the Illini Sports Network - WDWS 1400AM in addition to print weekly coverage in the Daily Illini and News-Gazette. In total, two Illini contests will be featured on the conference's television network, while WDWS will carry five home matches.
Illinois' home-opener against Gonzaga will be broadcast by WDWS, with Brian Moline and Tim Ditman calling the game from Illinois Soccer and Track Stadium. The Illini Sports Network will also cover the Orange and Blue's match-ups with USC (9/2), Purdue (10/2), Minnesota (10/14) and Wisconsin (10/16).
The Big Ten Network will show a delayed broadcast of Illinois' contest at Michigan State on Oct. 8, with the game airing on the network on Oct. 9. The following weekend, the BTN will broadcast live from Illinois Soccer and Track Stadium during SoccerFest 2011 as Illinois hosts the Wisconsin Badgers at 3 p.m. on Oct. 16. Big Ten Student U will broadcast one additional contest, when Illinois hosts Minnesota on Oct. 14.
Illinois on the Big Ten Network
at Michigan State // Oct. 9 at Noon*
vs. Wisconsin // Sunday, Oct. 16 at 3 p.m.
Illinois on Student U
vs. Minnesota // Friday, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m.
Illinois on WDWS AM 1400
vs. Gonzaga // Friday, Aug. 19 at 7 p.m.
vs. USC // Friday, Sept. 2 at 7 p.m.
vs. Purdue // Sunday, Oct. 2 at 1 p.m.
vs. Minnesota // Friday, Oct. 14 at 7 p.m.
vs. Wisconsin // Sunday, Oct. 16 at 3 p.m.
Last Time Out
The University of Illinois soccer team (6-2-1 overall, 0-0-1 Big Ten) earned a come-from-behind tie with Iowa (8-0-1, 0-0-1) following two overtime periods, 2-2. The Illini fell behind in the contest by two goals before the offense propelled Illinois to the tied outcome with second half tallies separated by only 71 seconds of gameplay.
In the first half, the Hawkeyes notched two early strikes before the Illini defense settled in. Alex Melin and Cloe Lacasse each earned a goal in the 10th and 13th minutes to go up by two goals; however, the Orange and Blue defense shut down Iowa over the remainder of the contest.
Entering the second half down by two goals, the Illini played scoreless soccer for nearly an additional 25 minutes before Jenna Carosio cut the deficit with a tally in the 68th minute, following consecutive passes from Megan Pawloski and Vanessa DiBernardo. Needing over 67 minutes to find the back of the net the first time at Iowa, Illinois only needed an additional 71 seconds to tie the contest. Shayla Mutz tallied her second goal of the contest, using her head to push the ball by Iowa's goalkeeper, Emily Moran, for the game-tying goal following a cross by DiBernardo.
The Orange and Blue head to (RV) Ohio State (5-3-1 overall, 0-0-1 Big Ten) and (RV) Penn State (7-3-0, 0-1-0) to wrap up the longest regular season road stretch in the program's 15-year history. The Illini will face the Buckeyes in Columbus, Ohio, on Friday, Sept. 23 at 6:30 p.m. CT before heading to the Nittany Lions for a contest at noon on Sunday, Sept. 25. Both teams are receiving votes in the official NSCAA top-25 and have spent at least one week this season in the top-25 listing.
Ohio State is led by Danica Wu and Kiiri Kuld, both owning six points on two goals and two assists through nine game of the 2011 schedule. The Buckeyes employ an offense-by-committee, sharing the ball effectively among 11 players in recording 11 goals and 13 assists. Tiffany Cameron, a 2010 First Team All-Big Ten selection, is one of four Ohio State players with four points, joined by 2010 Big Ten Offensive Player of the year Paige Maxwell.
In net, thee Ohio State goalies have split minutes in goal, with Katie Baumgardner leading the way. Baumgardner owns a 4-3-1 record on the year with six goals allowed in 714 minutes (0.76 GAA), starting all nine contests. Rachel Middleman follows with 127 minutes of action over three contests, earning one win on the season while allowing one goal. Jessie Greenberg has played the remaining seven minutes on the season, seeing time in one game on the year. In total the Buckeyes goalie unit has held opponents to seven goals while making 20 saves in nearly 850 minutes of action, good for a goals-against average of 0.74, including four clean sheets.
Ohio State enters its contest with Illinois following a tie with Minnesota, 1-1, during which Wu tied the contest for the Buckeyes with a 53rd minute goal after Gopher Shari Eckstrom got on the board in the 32nd minute for Minnesota.
The Buckeyes and Illini last met in Columbus, Ohio, during the 2010 season, with Illinois entering the contest at No. 13 in the nation and Ohio State coming in at No. 17. Illinois left Columbus victorious, coming from down by one to earn the win, 2-1. Vanessa DiBernardo tied the contest in the 63rd minute following passes from Marissa Mykines and Megan Pawloski. 20 minutes later, Niki Read totaled the game-winner on a long-distance strike inside the right post, with DiBernardo totaling the assist on the play. The all-time series between the two teams is currently tied at 7-7; however, the visitor in the contest owns the advantage on the road. The Illini are 4-3 overall in Columbus, while the Buckeyes are 4-3 when they travel to Champaign, Ill.
Maya Hayes will lead the Nittany Lions against the Illini, with 28 points on 13 goals and two assists through 10 games. Hayes' offensive dominance is followed by Taylor Schram's 16 points on five goals and six assists, while Jess Rosenbluth owns two goals and six assists on the year for 10 points. As a unit, the Nittany Lions have produced 26 goals and 34 assists in 914 minutes of action, with the above trio accounting for 77 percent of its goals and 63 percent of Penn State's points.
Graduate student Erin McNulty assumes goalie duties for Penn State, controlling the net for 823 of a possible 914 minutes. McNulty has allowed an average of 1.09 goals per game, giving up 10 tallies while stopping 31 shots. Krissy Tribbett has totaled 75 minutes of action on the year, stopping three shots without allowing a goal while Kristin Hartmann played in one contest, accumulating slightly more than 15 minutes of action.
Penn State lost its only Big Ten contest this season at Wisconsin, 1-0, as Badger Laurie Nosbusch provided the only goal of the contest in the 18th minute. The Nittany Lions managed 12 shots, putting seven on-target; however, Michele Dalton stopped each attempt to preserve the shutout for Wisconsin.
Illinois and Penn State last met in Champaign during the 2010 season, with the Nittany Lions coming away with a 2-0 victory. Weather conditions on the day, with 30 mile per hour sustained winds from the South, dictated play. During the first half, with Penn State playing with the wind at its back, the Nittany Lions totaled both of their goals an outshot Illinois, 20-3. However, in the second half, the Illini maintained possession in Penn State's half, totaling 11 shots to the Nittany Lions three; however, Illinois was unable to earn a goal for their efforts. The all-time series favors Penn State, 19-2, with Illinois last earning victory in Champaign on Oct. 1, 2006, coming away victorious over No. 9 Penn State, 3-2.
Nods of Approval
Through five weeks, the Illini have been recognized as a talented team among the nation's leaders. After debuting at No. 24 in the official NSCAA poll, the Orange and Blue now sit at No. 22 overall following their 6-2-1 season-opening record.
Illinois is also featured at No. 27 in Top Drawer Soccer's Tournament 64, a breakdown of the squads that TDS believes will reach the upcoming NCAA Tournament.
While the Illini receive national recognition as a squad the Big Ten Conference, Top Drawer Soccer and Soccer America have singled out sophomore Vanessa DiBernardo. The conference named DiBernardo the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week on Aug. 22 as the Naperville, Ill., native leads the conference in goals and points while Chicagoland Soccer followed suit by naming DiBernardo as its player of the week. Top Drawer Soccer and Soccer America also added DiBernardo on their respective Team of the Week listings, the only Big Ten student-athlete to earn both awards. Chicagoland Soccer also recognized the Illini the following week, with Niki Read taking home player of the week honors on Aug. 29 following her hat trick at Ball State while Megan Pawloski totaled the same award on Sept. 12. DiBernardo was also recognized as an all-tournament selection for the Illini/Boilermaker Challenge as well as the LSU Invitational, along with teammates Niki Read and Marissa Mykines (Illini/Boilermaker Challenge) and Megan Pawloski and Jackie Guerra (LSU Invitational).
Where's It Going To Come From?
While Vanessa DiBernardo has led the charge with an Illinois-best nine goals and three assist, the Orange and Blue offense opened the season with a team-wide outburst to record 77 points in only nine games (8.56 points per game).
Niki Read opened the season strong, producing a goal and assist against Gonzaga before tallying a seven-point contest at Ball State. Against the Cardinals, Read produced a hat trick and an assist to become one of only five Illini to ever record seven or more points in a single game, matching her 2010 points total of 10 in the process. Read added an assist on DiBernardo's first goal against Colorado and added another on a Megan Pawloski goal against Oregon for a career-high 12 points.
Marissa Mykines earned a goal and two assists against Gonzaga to match DiBernardo's four-point output versus the Bulldogs. Mykines then followed with an insurance goal against Toledo, extending Illinois' lead to 3-1 while matching her 2010 season points output of six. Mykines has since surpassed her previous year's output by contributing a game-tying goal vs. Colorado to earn eight points on the year.
Megan Pawloski owns 10 points on four goals and two assists, including a multi-goal game against Oregon. Julie Ewing follows with a career-best three goals, recording one each against Gonzaga, Toledo and Oregon.
Shayla Mutz earned the game-winning goal in overtime at Louisville, while adding an assist on a Pawloski goal against No. 13 Pepperdine. Mutz also owns the game-tying strike at Iowa, a header shot in the 68th minute. Allie Osoba and Stephanie Pouse produced their first collegiate goals against Toledo and Ball State, respectively, with each securing it on their only shot to date, while Pouse has since added an assist to tally three points on the year.
High Octane Offense
Nine games through the 2011 season, Illinois posted 77 points on 30 goals and 18 assists - the second-most productive nine game stretch to open a season in program history and best during the Janet Rayfield era. Previously, the Illini posted 90 points through the opening nine contests during the 1998 season. Following the 2011 season's 77-point outburst, the next closest show of offensive force during Rayfield's tenure as head coach comes in 2007, when Illinois put up 57 points through nine contests en route to the fifth of six consecutive NCAA Tournament appearances.
In the most recent NCAA statistical release, this output placed the Illini eighth in the nation for scoring offense, while sophomore Vanessa DiBernardo earned national standings in a number of categories. DiBernardo ranks tied for fifth in game-winning goals (4), tied-12th for total goals (9), 14th in goals per game (1.00), tied-14th in total points (21) and 20th in the nation in points per game (2.22).
To achieve the current feat, the Illini dropped Gonzaga and Toledo by identical scores, 5-1. The Orange and Blue then shut down Ball State, 5-0, before winning an overtime match, 2-1, at Louisville. Following a 3-1 defeat against UCS, the Illini returned to their high-scoring ways with a 3-2 win over Colorado. After suffering a loss to No. 13 Pepperdine, 4-2, to open LSU Invitational action, Illinois responded with a 5-0 drubbing of Oregon in its final non-conference match of the season before traveling to Iowa to earn a come-from-behind tie, 2-2, with the Hawkeyes.
Illinois currently leads the Big Ten in total shots (185) and stands in second for points (79), goals (30) and goals per game (3.33), while the Illini are tied for third in corner kick attempts (56). Individually, DiBernardo stands tied for first in shots (45) and shots per game (5.00), tied for second in game-winners (4), tied for fifth in goals (9) and goals per contest (1.00) and owns sixth for most points (21) and points per game (2.33). Junior Niki Read's name also appears predominantly among the conference leaders, appearing in the top-10 for goals (4), goals per game (0.44), assists (4), assists per game (0.44), points (12) and points per game (1.33).