Men’s Soccer: Northwestern looks to bounce back in game against Penn State

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Men’s Soccer: Northwestern looks to bounce back in game against Penn State

A group of Wildcats celebrate a goal. The Cats are looking to brush off a loss to Loyola in their last game as they travel to face Penn State on Sunday.

A group of Wildcats celebrate a goal. The Cats are looking to brush off a loss to Loyola in their last game as they travel to face Penn State on Sunday.

Daily file photo by Zack Laurence

A group of Wildcats celebrate a goal. The Cats are looking to brush off a loss to Loyola in their last game as they travel to face Penn State on Sunday.

Daily file photo by Zack Laurence

Daily file photo by Zack Laurence

A group of Wildcats celebrate a goal. The Cats are looking to brush off a loss to Loyola in their last game as they travel to face Penn State on Sunday.

Ben Pope, Reporter

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After a zombie-like performance earlier this week, Northwestern must quickly change costumes before traveling to Penn State for a crucial game Sunday morning.

Tuesday’s 2-0 defeat to Loyola shouldn’t be too difficult to mentally move past: The Wildcats remain 3-3-0 in the Big Ten (6-7-2 overall), within reach of the regular season title and 35th in the national RPI rankings

NU will travel outside the Chicago area for the first time since Oct. 2, when it beat Maryland 2-1 in overtime. A win during this weekend’s trip to State College, Pennsylvania could potentially move them into a tie with Rutgers for first place in the conference.

Penn State (6-6-3, 2-3-2) heads into the matchup against the Cats seeking to reignite their fading NCAA Tournament hopes and end a skid of poor form.

The Nittany Lions have won just two of their last eight matches and lost five of six between Sept. 26 and Oct. 19. They earned a much-needed 3-0 victory over Loyola Marymount in their last home outing, but then tied 2-2 against a last-place Wisconsin team this past Saturday.

The Cats could enjoy an opportunity to jump-start their offense, which has not scored more than two goals in any game this year, as Penn State has conceded 11 goals in its last five contests.

Last season, junior forward Mike Roberge ended the meeting with the Nittany Lions — the second-to-last game of NU’s 2014 campaign — with a double-overtime game-winner. It was the third consecutive year the two foes went to overtime.

On this Halloween weekend, Roberge will likely hope to again put on a cape and fill the Superman role, as the Cats look for an immensely important win.

Email: benjaminpope2019@u.northwestern.edu

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