A pair of Northwestern goals in each half was enough to take down Ohio State field hockey, 4-1, Saturday afternoon in OSU’s final road game of the regular season.
With the victory, the No. 9 Wildcats (12-5, 6-1) stayed tied with Maryland atop the Big Ten standings with one game remaining in the regular season.
OSU coach Anne Wilkinson stressed in recent weeks that the Buckeyes need to get out to a fast start against top ranked competition, but OSU (6-10, 1-6) fell behind early to Northwestern.
A little more than two minutes into the game, Northwestern forced a penalty corner against OSU’s defense.
Sophomore midfielder Dominique Masters capitalized, scoring her 11th goal of the season off a pass from junior midfielder Charlotte Martin to give the Wildcats the 1-0 advantage.
OSU freshman goalkeeper Liz Tamburro attempted to keep the Wildcats out of the net after Masters’ goal as she tallied 12 saves, but Northwestern kept continued pressure on the Buckeyes with 19 shots in the game.
The Wildcats’ second score came off a rebound as junior forward Kelley Stump approached the net and fired at Tamburro, but the freshman saved the shot with her glove.
The ball bounced right to redshirt-sophomore Ashley Bernardi, and the midfielder converted to give Northwestern a 2-0 halftime lead.
OSU was able to strike less than two minutes into the second half. Freshman midfielder Maddy Humphrey scored her team-leading 12th goal of the season in front of the net off an entry pass from freshman midfielder Morgan Kile.
That’s as close as OSU would get, however.
Freshman back Sophia Miller scored her first goal of the season off a rebound to give Northwestern a 3-1 lead with 24 minutes left in regulation.
Then, OSU’s struggles continued, allowing a third goal off a rebound from sophomore midfielder Juliet Beatty.
OSU is scheduled to be back in action Sunday at Buckeye Varsity Field for the regular season finale against its rival Michigan. The game is set to begin at noon.