While our football team was busy getting its head ripped off — figuratively and almost literally — by Michigan, our other fall sports were busy doing some winning and losing. There was some good, some bad. Let's get to the recaps for the week that was.
MEN'S SOCCER: Head coach Tim Lenahan's crew had probably the best week of all of NU's fall sports teams, as the Wildcats earned a 1-1 draw on the road against No. 12 Notre Dame on Wednesday and then followed that up with a 3-2 beatdown of conference-leading Ohio State on Sunday. With the results, the team improved to 5-4-3 overall, 1-0-1 in the Big Ten.
Senior Oliver Kupe was named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Week, scoring NU's game-tying goal against Notre Dame late in the second half, and then scoring NU's second goal against Ohio State with a header early in the second half. Kupe has five goals on the season to lead the team and 19 for his career, putting him ninth on NU's all-time goals list.
NU is at home on Wednesday taking on Northern Illinois in a non-conference match, before hitting the road for a match Sunday against conference bottom-dwellers Penn State.
FIELD HOCKEY: NU's top fall sports program so far had a rough week, dropping a 3-2 double-OT heartbreaker at home to Michigan on Friday and then losing again at home to Yale, 3-2, on Sunday. The Wildcats took a page from their football counterparts, blowing second-half leads in both games. NU, which fell to 10-6 overall, 1-3 Big Ten, was ranked No. 14 coming into the weekend but will surely fall in the NFHCA poll when it comes out tomorrow.
Junior Chelsea Armstrong had three goals on the weekend to push her conference-leading total to 22 on the year. Senior Regan Mooney leads the Big Ten in assists with 18. The Wildcats return to action next weekend with a pair of home games: Friday against Pacific in a nonconference match, and then Saturday against No. 17 Iowa.
VOLLEYBALL: The Wildcats nearly did the unthinkable last Wednesday, coming really close to a major upset of four-time defending national champs Penn State, losing in five sets, 3-2. To get an idea of how dominant the Nittany Lions have been against NU, until Wednesday, the Wildcats hadn't won a set against Penn State since 2003, and hadn't won a set on Penn State's home court since 1987.
Unfortunately, NU couldn't carry any positive mojo from that loss into Saturday's match against No. 25 Ohio State, losing that one as well, 3-1.
The losses dropped NU to 10-7 overall, 1-5 in the Big Ten. The silver lining is that NU is seeing some solid performances from its younger players, possibly a sign of better things to come. Sophomore Stephanie Holtuscontinues to lead the team in kills with 4.27/set, while freshman Yewande Akanbi (highlighted in the video above) also had good matches with 15 kills against Penn State and 10 kills against Ohio State.
WOMEN'S SOCCER: The Wildcats halted a five-match losing streak with a little bit of luck, in a 1-0 win over Michigan on Saturday. NU scored the game-winner when a throw-in by Nicole Jewell was accidentally headed by a Michigan defender into her own net in the 59th minute. The Wildcats then survived an onslaught of 18 shots to pick up the win.
The win improved the Wildcats' record to 2-11-0 overall, 1-5-0 Big Ten. NU returns to action with a pair of home matches, Friday against Wisconsin and Sunday against Minnesota.
CROSS COUNTRY: The team had the week off from competition and will travel to Madison on Friday for the University of Wisconsin Invitational.