Previewing 2018 Field Hockey: ACC/Big Ten Cup Vs. Northwestern

boston college field hockey

No. 13 Boston College (1-1) will play its final game in the ACC/Big Ten Cup, an early-season tournament that it has participated in since 2015, against Northwestern (1-2) Sunday morning. The No. 12 Wildcats are going to be a tough opponent for the Eagles who just recently fell to No. 4 Maryland on Friday. Head coach Kelly Doton says her team is expecting a rigorous battle with Northwestern, but also that its prepared to execute. With the same effort and mindset the Eagles put into their matchup with Maryland, they could give the Wildcats a good fight and perhaps even come out with a win.

Who is BC playing?

Northwestern

When is BC playing?

Sunday, Sept. 2, 11 a.m.

Where is BC playing?

College Park, Md.

How to Watch:

The game will be livestreamed on BTN2Go.

By the Numbers:

BC:

1) BC has recorded a total of nine goals this season, an average of 4.50 goals per game compared to its opponents average of 1.50, not to mention that the Eagles are posting a shots on goal percentage of .719—considerably higher than their opponents average of .474.

2) Brooke Matherson and Fusine Govaert are tied atop BC’s goal-scoring leaderboard this season with two apiece.

3) Jaime Natale logged four shots against Maryland, Ymke Rose Gote was close behind with three, and junior goalkeeper, Sarah Dwyer held down the fort with five saves.

Northwestern:

1) Sophomore Florien Marcussen notched a career-high 10 saves on Friday against Duke. Her highest single-match save total prior to this game was eight.

2) The Wildcats have averaged 1.67 goals through their first three games of the 2018 campaign. Meanwhile, their opponents are scoring 3.33 times per contest.

3) Senior Puck Pentenga leads Northwestern with five points. She was named to the Big Ten Preseason Honors list and was a First Team All-Big Ten selection, as well as a Third-Team All-American last season.

Last Meeting:

Northwestern leads the all-time series, 11-2. In 2016, the Wildcats defeated No. 8 BC with a late-game goal. The year before that, they had a bit more breathing room, defeating the Eagles, 3-1. This past season, though, BC edged Northwestern, 3-2, in double overtime.

BC wins if…

It can execute well and follow through with its gameplan. The Eagles have had a lot of preparation for teams as good as Northwestern and if they can apply pressure, from start to finish, they could very well outlast the Wildcats for the second-straight season. BC will have to get good looks on net, especially Natale and Gote, who led the team in shots against Maryland. The Eagles record an average of 16 shots per game—about six more than their opponents. Above all else, though, another strong performance by Dwyer in the cage will most likely keep BC in the game.

BC loses if…

It fails to keep Pentenga in check. The senior midfielder is a vital player for the Wildcats and if she has easy access to the net, the Eagles will surely be in trouble. BC has to watch the net carefully and minimize Northwestern’s shots on goal. It’ll have to produce on the other end of the field too. If Matherson and Govaert can’t find the back of the cage, the Eagles might just have a tough time keeping pace with the Wildcats.

Featured Image by Sam Zhai / Heights Staff