ANN ARBOR, Mich. – No. 4 Penn State women’s soccer heads west for its first extended road trip of the 2023 campaign, as the Nittany Lions get set for a nationally-ranked matchup against the No. 22 Michigan Wolverines Thursday night from the U-M Soccer Stadium. Kickoff is slated for 7 p.m. (ET), with streaming available to a worldwide audience via B1G+.
#4 PENN STATE at #22 MICHIGAN
Thursday, September 28, 2023 | 7 p.m. (ET)
U-M Soccer Stadium | Ann Arbor, Mich.
Watch Live: B1G+
Live Stats: StatBroadcast
FOLLOW THE ACTION
For fans in Central Pennsylvania, and members of Nittany Nation around the world, Penn State’s first contest of the week in the Great Lakes State will be streamed live via B1G+. Authenticated subscribers are invited to click here and sign in on their mobile phones, computers, smart TVs and other connected devices to follow along. Brian Boesch will provide live play-by-play commentary during Thursday night’s ranked tilt. Live stats provided by the University of Michigan and StatBroadcast are available by clicking here.
The Blue & White return to action following another undefeated work in Big Ten Conference competition with a pair of one-goal victories over the Rutgers Scarlet Knights and Nebraska Cornhuskers. PSU secured its first win in Piscataway since 2008 with a 2-1 result, followed by a rain-soaked 1-0 win over the Cornhuskers at Jeffrey Field. Individually, senior+ midfielder Cori Dyke hauled in TopDrawerSoccer Honorable Mention National Team of the Week accolades, her first national recognition in her career. Penn State currently stands as the No. 1 team in the nation in terms of the NCAA RPI, with the Blue & White edging No. 2 North Carolina by a slim 0.00426 margin. The Blue & White stand as one of just four women’s soccer programs nationally that has yet to trail in a match, joining B1G foe Indiana, as well as Dartmouth and Texas Tech. Among teams that have yet to trail this season, PSU has allowed the fewest total goals, surrendering just three opponent scores in the 2023 campaign.
LAST TIME OUT: NEBRASKA
No. 4 Penn State coupled a dominant defensive outing with a late set piece score from senior+ midfielder Cori Dyke, culminating in a 1-0 victory Sunday afternoon over the Nebraska Cornhuskers. The Cornhuskers and Nittany Lions played a relatively even match across the board, with both teams having to fight through intense defensive pressure to generate offensive opportunities. Nebraska finished the afternoon’s contest with a slim lead on the shot chart, outpacing the Blue & White by a narrow 16-13 edge overall and a 5-3 margin in terms of shots on goal. The Huskers also took home a narrow edge in the corner kick battle, leading the category by a 5-4 tally. Sunday’s result saw the Nittany Lions pick up a win while losing the corner kick contest for the first time in 2023.
Senior+ defender Kate Wiesner continues her fifth year in Happy Valley and her fourth season of on-field competition in 2023. The Monrovia, California, native was dominant in her first full season as a routine starter a year ago, finishing with two goals, 11 assists and 15 total points in 2022. Wiesner ranked at the top of the Big Ten Conference in both total assists (11) and assists per match (0.48) last year. Wiesner is well on her way to replicating her dominant 2022 season, with the Nittany Lions’ starting left back ranked second on the 2023 roster with four assists through the first 10 matches of the year. Wiesner set a season high against West Chester with a pair of dishes in the match, in addition to assists against Princeton and Nebraska. Wiesner ranks ninth in the Big Ten Conference in assists per match with a 0.40 mark, while her four total assists place her in 10th in the Big Ten in the category.
WATCHING THE WOLVERINES
Sixth-year skipper Jennifer Klein leads Michigan into Thursday night’s contest boasting a 6-2-2 overall record coupled with a 2-1 start to Big Ten Conference competition. The Wolverines stand as the 22nd-ranked team in the nation, dropping three spots after suffering a 2-1 road loss against the Illinois Fighting Illini. Michigan opened Big Ten competition with consecutive victories over Minnesota and then-No. 18 Northwestern before their defeat in Champaign. Senior forward Sammi Woods has been dominant for the Wolverines in her fourth season in Ann Arbor, connecting on five goals with 11 total points scored in 2023. Between the posts, senior shot stopper Stephanie Sparkowski leads the way with 53 total saves and a 0.883 save percentage.
STORY OF THE SERIES
Heading into the 41st all-time meeting between the two programs, Penn State maintains a dominant 26-7-7 overall lead against Michigan since the teams first met back in 1994. In the last 10 matchups, Penn State has hauled in seven victories while dropping just three contests to Michigan. The Nittany Lions seek their first victory over Michigan on the road in Ann Arbor since downing the Wolverines in a 2-1 result on Oct. 7, 2018. Penn State came away with a convincing 3-0 victory over the Wolverines in last year’s regular season meeting in University Park. Ally Schlegel led the way with a pair of goals while Ellie Wheeler contributed a pair of assists in the dominant result.
FOLLOW THE NITTANY LIONS
Visit GoPSUSports.com for more information on Penn State women’s soccer. Fans can keep up to date with the Nittany Lion women’s soccer team on X and Instagram @PennStateWSOC, in addition to the team’s Facebook page at /PSUWomensSoccer.
The 30th Season of Penn State women’s soccer is presented by the Smeal College of Business.
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