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No. 8 Rutgers women's soccer faces Michigan in Big Ten battle

Senior midfielder Frankie Tagliaferri scored 1 of Rutgers' 2 goals against Ohio State on Wednesday. – Photo by Olivia Thiel

The Rutgers women’s soccer team is returning home at 1 p.m. this Wednesday to face Michigan in a rescheduled match at Yurcak Field. The No. 8 Scarlet Knights (9-2-0, 4-0-0) are setting the bar in the Big Ten, being the only team with a perfect record in conference play. They put their record on the line against the Wolverines (8-1-3, 2-0-2), the only other unbeaten team within conference play.

Michigan’s undefeated streak stretches back a whole month to its last loss on Sept. 3 against USC in overtime. Since then, the Wolverines have won all but three games, which resulted in ties against Louisville, Wisconsin and Indiana.

Their most recent match against the Hoosiers (8-2-3, 2-1-2) was rained out at the start of overtime, resulting in a scoreless draw. Hillary Beall recorded a season-high six saves and her fifth clean sheet of the season.

Rutgers’ last outing against Ohio State resulted in its fourth consecutive conference win. The 2-1 road victory marked their fifth consecutive win overall. Five Knights contributed points yesterday.

Senior midfielder Frankie Tagliaferri and sophomore forward Giana Romano scored goals. The goals were assisted by sophomore forward Allison Lowrey, freshman forward Gia Girman and freshman midfielder Kylie Daigle. Senior goalkeeper Meagan McClelland also tied her season-high with five saves during the match.

“It feels great to be able to contribute to the win today. We worked hard until the end and finished the weekend off with a big 6 points,” Romano said. “Road wins in the Big Ten are never easy, and hopefully we can keep grinding and take this momentum into the next two conference games coming up."

Rutgers has been one of the best teams in the Big Ten this season in terms of statistics. Conference play has emphasized this fact. The Knights are third in scoring average, goals and second in assists. The team also has the second-fewest goals allowed in the conference.

Individually, Tagliaferri and sophomore midfielder Sam Kroeger have led Rutgers in points since the start of the 2021 season. Some Michigan players to look out for include the team’s leading goal scorer Nicki Hernandez and Raleigh Loughman, who is tied for the program’s assist lead with Meredith Haakenson.

Tonight’s game will be broadcasted for radio listeners on 88.7 WRSU, and live stats will be provided at kickoff.

For updates on the Rutgers women's soccer team, follow @TargumSports on Twitter.

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