Rapid Recap: No. 3 Northwestern 16, No. 17 Michigan 8


Daily file photo by Joanne Haner

Graduate student midfielder Allie Berkery looks to thwart an opposing attack. Berkery made her eighth start of the season against Michigan Thursday.

Jake Epstein, Assistant Sports Editor

Six days after graduate student attacker Izzy Scane’s eight goals helped her team steamroll through then-No. 4 Stony Brook, No. 3 Northwestern commenced its conference slate against No. 17 Michigan in Ryan Fieldhouse Thursday. 

The Wildcats (7-1, 1-0 Big Ten) trounced the Wolverines (6-4, 1-1 Big Ten) for their seventh consecutive victory in a decisive offensive showing.

Sophomore midfielder and defender Samantha White corralled the opening draw, but both teams failed to capitalize on the matchup’s preliminary possessions.

After Wolverine defender Maddie Burns picked up an early yellow card, senior attacker Erin Coykendall converted on the player-advantage, handing NU a 1-0 advantage with 11:59 remaining in the first frame.

While Michigan midfielder Julia Schawbe found an equalizer just before the 10-minute mark, graduate student attacker Hailey Rhatigan struck gold from the eight-meter, kickstarting a 5-0 Cats’ run.

Wolverine midfielder Erin Garvey beat the clock from the eight meter and halted the NU onslaught, cementing a 6-2 margin after 15 minutes of play.

With 11:20 remaining in the second quarter, Freshman midfielder Madison Taylor pushed through contact and tallied her second goal of the evening. 

The Cats continued cruising offensively, as Coykendall and Scane added three goals in just 1:06, propelling NU to a 10-2 lead with 7:42 remaining in the second quarter.

Michigan placed a temporary stopgap on the Cats’ attack when attacker Jill Smith beat goalkeeper Molly Laliberty for her 35th goal of the campaign, but Rhatigan and graduate student midfielder Elle Hansen sank consecutive shots to settle a 12-3 halftime margin.

Following the intermission, Coykendall completed her hat trick, and the running clock kicked in five minutes into the third period.

Scane and Smith each notched two scores for their respective sides, and the third quarter closed at 15-5.

The Wolverines made a last-ditch comeback attempt in the final frame, tallying three consecutive free position goals to cut the deficit to seven.

However, Scane effectively ended the contest with her seventh goal of the evening, putting the exclamation point on a 16-8 result.

Here’s three takeaways from NU’s home victory over Michigan.


  1. The Cats catapult in front with dominant first quarter showing

While both squads traded goals in the first five minutes of action, Rhatigan’s riser rallied the troops with 9:20 remaining in the primary period. A minute later, Scane sent NU two in front with her 36th goal of the season. 

The game briefly turned into a chippy defensive battle, with neither squad scoring for nearly five minutes. However, Taylor converted from a free position shot at the 3:54 mark. From there, Amonte and Scane added scores, handing the Cats a five-goal advantage.

ICLWA Hall of Fame Coach Kelly Amonte Hiller’s crew sat four in front at the quarter’s close and showed no signs of stopping.

  1. Izzy Scane Tewaaraton stock surges sky-high

Last time out, the Scane Train and Stony Brook midfielder Ellie Masera exchanged blows in a matchup of two of the nation’s preeminent players. While Masera kept the contest within reach early on, Scane’s dazzling display gave her — and NU — the upper hand in the contest.

The graduate student attacker wasted little time making an impact on Thursday, notching two first quarter goals. Midway through the second frame, Scane added two more goals, sealing her sixth hat trick in six outings. The halftime break failed to halt the conductor of the Lake Show, and Scane scored her 40th goal of the season with 7:19 remaining in the third frame. She then feigned an outlet pass before burying another score.

When the dust settled, Scane’s seven goal display sealed a seventh straight triumph.

Even when she wasn’t peppering the Wolverine net, Scane consistently affected the run of play, opening lanes for the Cats’ diverse attack to run rampant.

  1. The real test lies ahead for the program

Nine months and two weeks ago, NU collapsed in the closing quarter of the NCAA semifinal against an all-too familiar foe. The Cats now possess an opportunity to knock off No. 1 North Carolina and avenge their stunning defeat on Sunday.

The task appears to be an especially tall one.

The Tar Heels (7-0, 4-0 ACC) have cruised through their opening slate, defeating four ranked opponents. With a high-scoring attack and stingy defense, North Carolina will test each facet of NU’s lineup this weekend. 

Surely, Scane, Coykendall and Rhatigan must make the most of their opportunities in front of the net, while White will be trusted to command a difficult defensive effort.

Email: [email protected]

Twitter: @jakeepste1n

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