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Oct. 30, 2011
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. - The Penn State field hockey team (13-5, 4-2) earned a 4-1 victory over the Michigan State Spartans on Sunday afternoon to close out the 2011 regular season.
With the win, the Nittany Lions have clinched a three-seed for the upcoming Big Ten Tournament, which starts on Thursday on the University Park campus. Penn State will face No. 6 Northwestern in the opening round at 2:30 p.m. at the Penn State Field Hockey Complex.
All of Penn State's goals came in the first half. Sophomore Whitney Reddig (Lititz), freshman Taylor Herold (Fredericksburg, Va.), freshman Laura Gebhart (Mount Joy) and sophomore Brittany Grzywacz (Collegeville) all scored goals for the Nittany Lions. Junior Kelsey Amy (Sweet Valley) also had a big game as well, contributing two assists and applied pressure on MSU all day with her six recorded shots. Redshirt junior Ayla Halus (Hershey) made three stops in the cage.
Penn State's first scoring opportunity came eight and a half minutes into the contest, as redshirt junior Hannah Allison (Mifflinburg) had a shot off a penalty corner that went inches wide of the net. Michigan State would then answer on the other end as it was rewarded a penalty corner as well. Katherine Jamesion's shot was saved by Halus and the game remained tied at zero up to the 17 minute mark.
Penn State found the back of the net with 17:29 remaining the first half. Amy fed a beautiful ball from the corner of the endline into the area in front of the net. The ball passed two defenders and Reddig finished it perfectly, as she slid it right by the goaltender. Penn State had a 1-0 lead.
The Nittany Lions would then attack again. Just 45 second later, Amy's speed was too much for the Spartan defense as she made it by two defenders and played another nice ball to Herold on breakaway. The freshman finished it and gave the Nittany Lions a 2-0 advantage.
The bunch of goals continued, as Gebhart scored an isolation goal with 10 minutes remaining in the half. The freshman sensation scurried by a couple of defenders within the circle and cracked a shot that the goalie had no chance at.
The Nittany Lions upped their lead to 4-0 with 1:30 to go in the first half as Grzywacz was rewarded a penalty stroke that she capitalized on. Michigan State would add a goal in the second half, but that is all the Spartans would be able to do, as Penn State earned the solid 4-1 win.
Tickets for the Big Ten Tournament can be purchased by contacting the Bryce Jordan Center ticket office at 814-865-5555. All session passes are $18 for adults and $12 for students/senior citizens. Single session tickets will run at $8 for adults and $5 for students/senior citizens. Groups of 15 people or more may also purchase tickets at $12 for all session passes and $5 for a single session.
Check back to GoPSUsports.com for continued Penn State Field Hockey updates throughout the 2011 season.
Follow Penn State field hockey on Twitter: www.twitter.com/PennStateFH and www.twitter.com/GoPSUGreg.