Oct. 26, 2012
Michigan State takes on Northwestern at DeMartin Stadium today in the Spartans' final game of the season. Michigan State is 8-8-2 on the year and 2-7-1 in conference play. Northwestern enters Saturday's contest with a 6-10-2 record on the season and is 2-8-0 in the Big Ten.
The Spartans are coming off of a pair of losses on their weekend road trip to Penn State and Ohio State. MSU was defeated 5-1 by No. 4 Penn State, who on Sunday clinched its 14th consecutive Big Ten regular-season title after a 1-1 draw with Michigan. Michigan State then fell to Sunday opponent Ohio State by a score of 3-1.
Olivia Stander had an assist in both games over the weekend, bringing her season total to 10. That mark is tied for the Big Ten lead and brings Stander's career assist mark to 24, one shy of tying Laura Heyboer's school record. Her team leading 20 points this season also puts her career mark at 78, good for sixth place for career points at MSU.
The Spartans are 12-5-2 all-time against Northwestern and hold a 7-1-1 record when they play the Wildcats at home. When the teams met last year in the regular-season finale, the Spartans won 2-0; that result gave MSU the No.3 seed in the Big Ten tournament.
Northwestern enters Saturday's contest having won its last two games over Illinois and Iowa, which ended a nine-game winless streak for the Wildcats.
Kate Allen is the Wildcats' leading scorer with seven goals and three assists. Niki Sebo and Georgia Waddle each have four goals, while Jennifer Korn leads the team in assists with four.
Anna Cassell is the Wildcats leading goalkeeper. She owns a 1.48 GAA and .738 save percentage. Rachel Bergman has also seen time in net for Northwestern, recording two shutouts in six starts and posting a 1.57 GAA and .686 save percentage.
MSU Goalkeepers Courtney Clem and redshirt freshman Gabrielle Garuder have split time in each of the last two games after Clem recorded every minute in net for the Spartans through 16 games. Garuder's time in the Penn State and Ohio State games mark the first two appearances of her collegiate career. Clem owns a 1.11 GAA, .773 save percentage and 8-8-2 record with four shutouts. A redshirt sophomore, Clem saw spot time last season behind multiple-MSU record holder (and current volunteer assistant coach) Jill Flietstra.
Megan Marsack, who had a goal and an assist in her freshman season, has already surpassed her freshman year total in both goals (3) and points (7). Lisa Vogel did not have any points as a freshman, but had a goal and two assists vs. BG. Annie Steinlage scored her first collegiate tally against Fordham, while Chelsea Peterson recorded her first college score in the win over Loyola.
Tom Saxton is in his 22nd season as the head coach of the Spartan women's soccer program. A life-long Spartan, Saxton earned three letters as a player before returning to campus in 1989 to assist legendary Spartan soccer coach Joe Baum with both the men's and the new women's program. Saxton was appointed the second head coach in the history of the women's program on June 1, 1991. In 21 seasons, Saxton's career record stands at 213-169-39.
Tammy (Anderson) Farnum was a standout defender at MSU (1989-92) and is now in her 16th season on the staff. Stacy Heller was a standout keeper for MSU (2000-03) and was a two-time All-Big Ten pick. Jill Flietstra graduated in 2012 and joins the staff in her first post-graduate coaching position.
All twelve of the Big Ten's women's soccer teams came through the non-conference portion of their schedules with a .500 record or better.
Two Big Ten women's soccer squads appear in the latest NSCAA/Continental Tire rankings, announced on Tuesday, October 16th. Penn State (14-2-0) is No. 4, while Michigan (13-2-1) moved up four spots to No. 17. Ohio State also received votes.
Seniors Jordan Mueller, Kelsey Kassab, Chelsea Peterson, Kori Reinhart, Olivia Stander, Kelly Lindsay and Desiree Aber will all be recognized before the game on Sunday as a part of Senior Day. This senior class has a record of 42-25-11 over the last four years. The women's soccer program, athletic department, and University thank them for their contributions to the program over the last four years.