Week #8: U-M Takes on Northwestern in Battle of Big Ten Unbeatens

Oct. 12, 2010

#12 Michigan vs. Northwestern
Phyllis Ocker Field • Ann Arbor, Mich.
Friday, Oct. 15: U-M vs. Northwestern, 4 p.m. • Live Stats
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Phyllis Ocker Field

The No. 12 University of Michigan field hockey team (9-5, 3-0 Big Ten) opens its final three-game home stand this Friday (Oct. 15) with a 4 p.m. game against Northwestern (10-4, 2-0 Big Ten) at Ocker Field. The matchup pits the only two unbeaten teams in the conference.

Michigan is coming off a 2-0 win at Iowa this past Sunday (Oct. 10), moving to 3-0 in Big Ten play for the first time since 2007 and the seventh time in program history.

Wolverines Jump to No. 12 in NFHCA Poll -- Michigan earned 379 votes in the Oct. 12 Kookaburra/NFHCA Division I National Coaches poll, good for a No. 12 ranking. It is the highest the Wolverines have been ranked since the Sept. 2, 2008, poll. The Wolverines are one of four Big Ten teams in the top 20 this week, as Ohio State and Michigan State are sixth and seventh, respectively. Northwestern, Michigan's opponent on Friday, is just outside the top 20, garnering 43 votes.

U-M in the Big Ten Rankings -- Freshman Rachael Mack (Bromsgrove, England/Bromsgrove School) is fourth in goals (9) and tied for seventh in points (20) in the latest Big Ten statistics released Oct. 10. Redshirt senior Paige Laytos (Lititz, Pa./Warwick) is fifth with nine assists, while senior Alicia Mayer (Selinsgrove, Pa./Selinsgrove) is tied for seventh with seven goals, tied for ninth with 19 points and tied for 10th with five assists. Redshirt freshman Haley Jones (Ann Arbor, Mich./Pioneer) is tied for second with four shutouts, while her 1.35 goals-against average is third in the league. Jones also is sixth in the conference with 36 saves.

Mack Earns Third Big Ten Freshman of the Week Honor -- For the third time this season, Rachael Mack (Bromsgrove, England/Bromsgrove School) has been named Big Ten Freshman of the Week, the conference office announced on Monday (Oct. 11). /sports/w-fieldh/spec-rel/101110aaa.html

Battle of Big Ten Unbeatens Friday at Ocker -- The Big Ten's two remaining unbeaten teams meet on Friday when Michigan hosts Northwestern at Ocker Field. The Wolverines have wins over Penn State, Michigan State and Iowa, allowing just one goal in the three conference matches. The Wildcats have defeated Ohio State and Indiana in Big Ten play this season and have the league's top goal scorer in Chelsea Armstrong, who has 19 goals in 14 games in 2010.

Laytos, Way Both Move up All-Time Lists -- Paige Laytos (Lititz, Pa./Warwick) and senior Meredith Way (Lititz, Pa./Warwick) both moved up Michigan's all-time lists in career assists and goals, respectively. Laytos had three assists in wins over Miami and Iowa and now has 24 assists in her career. That mark is good for 10th place and Laytos needs two more helpers to tie Kristi Gannon (Fisher) (2000-03) for the ninth spot. Way scored both goals in the 2-0 win over Iowa on Sunday (Oct. 10) and now has 37 career goals. That puts her in a tie for eighth place with Gannon on the all-time goals scored list. Way needs two more goals to tie Kay McCarthy (1980-83) for the seventh spot.

Quick Hits -- Michigan has won 18 straight games against Northwestern dating back to the 1997 season ... Freshman Michelle Roberts (Pocomoke, Md./Pocomoke) scored her first career goal in the win over Miami. Michigan now has 10 different goal scorers this season and 13 different players with points on the year ... Michigan is 16th in shutouts per game (0.29/g) and 18th in assists per game (2.29/g), according to the latest NCAA statistics, released on Oct. 10 ... Six different players have scored game-winning goals after Mack's overtime winner against Miami this past Friday (Oct. 8).

U-M All-Time vs. Northwestern - 20-28
U-M All-Time vs. the Big Ten - 96-102-8
U-M All-Time at Ocker Field - 112-39

Sticking with It Blog: Eileen Brandes

Friday, Oct. 22, 3 p.m. -- vs. Ohio State (Phyllis Ocker Field)
Friday, Oct. 24, 11 a.m. -- vs. UC Davis (Phyllis Ocker Field)

Contact: Kent Reichert (734) 763-4423