Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

50° Evanston, IL
Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881

The Daily Northwestern

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Cats look to buck trend of losing to Ohio State

Earlier this season, Northwestern ended a nine-game losingstreak against Iowa with a 1-0 overtime victory.

The Wildcats (7-7, 1-2 Big Ten) will look to end another streakon Saturday, an eight-year slide against Ohio State.

A win this weekend would not only improve NU’s chances of endingthe season with a winning-record for the first time since 1995 butwould also end a 16-match losing streak to the Buckeyes (7-6,0-3).

“All we need is consistency,” senior Candice Cooper said. “Whenwe do score, we need to keep scoring throughout the entire game. Wecan’t even stop at three or four goals.”

Cooper is the fifth leading goal scorer in the nation, andcontinues to climb in the NU record book. She’s 12th all time insingle-season scoring, 11th in career scoring, eighth in careergoals and seventh in single-season goals.

Under Cooper’s leadership, the NU offense is averaging more thantwo goals per game and has scored three or more goals five timesthis year.

Freshman Cassie Miller has three goals and three assists thisseason, and has been an integral part of the Cats’ offense in herfirst season.

Miller said the keys to success on offense this weekend aresimple.

“We need to make opportunities happen,” Miller said. “We need tobe able to finish and score.”

The Cats’ defense has been solid throughout the season, holdingopponents to under two goals per game. The defense has only givenup more than three goals twice this season.

“We need to maintain a mental focus,” coach Kelly McCollum said.”I think the team has the physical skills, we just need to be moreconsistent in our focus.”

Freshman defensive starter Katie Charles said she also hasconfidence in her team’s defensive talent.

“All we need is to have a lot of communication and keep ourconfidence up,” Charles said. “We all have the skills to keep theball out of the net.”

The Cats have struggled to keep their composure at times, andgave up three goals in three minutes in a 4-3 loss to New Hampshireon Sunday. New Hampshire came into the game 1-11. But McCollum saidher team has responded well in practice since the defeat.

“I think our response has been great,” McCollum said. “We havehad two high-intensity, high-skilled practices and are ready tomove forward against Ohio State.”

Although McCollum’s lineup seems to be becoming more consistentas the season progresses, she said it may still continue tochange.

“We still didn’t win two games last weekend,” McCollum said. “Wehad a consistent lineup, not a consistent performance.”

NU began the season 4-0, but has gone 3-7 since.

The Cats are 7-2 this season against opponents outside the top20 and 0-5 against top-20 teams. Three of the Cats’ last fourregular-season opponents — Penn State, Duke and Iowa — are rankedin the top 20.

But even with the tough stretch ahead, McCollum believes NUstill is on pace for a successful season.

“I still think we can meet our team goals we set at thebeginning of the season,” McCollum said.

Reach Abraham Rakov at [email protected]<.

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Northwestern University and Evanston's Only Daily News Source Since 1881
Cats look to buck trend of losing to Ohio State