No. 10 Field Hockey Travels to No. 23 Ohio State for Big Ten Tournament Quarterfinals
PISCATAWAY, N.J. – No. 10 Rutgers field hockey starts the postseason this weekend. The Scarlet Knights head to Columbus for the Big Ten Tournament Quarterfinals, where they will face No. 23 Ohio State at 1 p.m. on Sunday. RU earned the number five seed for the tournament, while Ohio State is the fourth seed. The game will be live streamed on BTN Plus. The winner of this game will advance to next weekend's Big Ten Tournament Semifinals, hosted by Northwestern in Evanston, Illinois. With a win, RU will face the winner of No. 1 seed Maryland versus the No. 8 Indiana / No. 9 Michigan State quarterfinal game. Rutgers enters the weekend 13-4 overall and 4-4 in Big Ten games. The team has set program records this year in ranked wins (five), top-10 wins (two), conference wins (four) and earned the highest ranked win in program history over No. 6 Princeton. The Scarlet Knights are a program-best No. 10 in the NFHCA Coaches Poll and No. 7 in the NCAA RPI. The Scarlet Knights are on a five-game winning streak and have won six of the last seven, including three ranked wins in that stretch. Over last five games, they have outscored opponents 15-1. On the year, RU is outscoring opponents 50-17. Rutgers leads the nation with nine shutouts on the year, behind three-time Big Ten Goalkeeper of the Week Gianna Glatz. The team is also ranked in the nation's top-ten in defensive saves (second), save percentage (second), goals-against-average (sixth), scoring margin (eighth) and winning percentage (eighth). They lead the conference in defensive saves (nine), save percentage (.827) and shutouts. Rutgers is 4-2 away from home, with the only losses coming to top-10 teams (No. 2 Maryland and No. 10 Michigan). The Scarlet Knights have also earned two ranked wins (No. 15 Northwestern, No. 19 Delaware). Glatz holds a save percentage of .795, which tops the conference and is second in the nation. Daphne Groothuis leads the conference and is third in the nation in assists per game (.76), while pacing the Big Ten and 10th in the nation with 2.18 points per game. With 13 assists this season, Groothuis needs just two more assists to tie for Rutgers' all-time most assists in a season mark. Rutgers previously faced Ohio State on September 23rd, in a home game televised by the Big Ten Network. The Scarlet Knights took a 3-2 halftime lead behind two goals from senior Nikki Profita and one from Groothuis, but OSU scored late in the second half to extend the game. The Buckeyes claimed the win by advancing through a penalty shootout. Ohio State enters the game at 11-7, its most wins since 2011. They also went 4-4 in conference play, advancing on tiebreakers to earn the higher seed and host this contest. Offensively, they are led by Esther Clotet, who has posted 10 goals and 25 points, with Sammy Stone adding eight tallies. In goal, freshman Aaliyah Hernandez has a 1.29 goals-against-average and .699 save percentage. Since starting 4-5, Ohio State has won seven out of nine games to conclude the year, with both losses coming in double overtime. Rutgers is looking for its first ever Big Ten Tournament win. The Scarlet Knights have previously played Northwestern, Maryland and Michigan in Big Ten Tournament Quarterfinals.