A Winning Weekend
It was quite a weekend for Penn State sports, and not just for the guys who dominated out in West Lafayette. As with Bill O’Brien’s team, which improved to 4-1 in conference play, most of the Nittany Lions’ success this weekend came on the road.
The field hockey team headlined the weekend, claiming its second straight (and sixth overall) Big Ten tournament title with a 2-0 victory over Michigan. The Lions, who also won the regular-season league title, are ranked No. 4 in the nation and will be among the favorites in this year’s NCAA tournament.
The men’s soccer team didn’t have to play over the weekend to clinch a share of the Big Ten regular-season crown, which the Lions share with Northwestern. They’ll be the top seed when the conference tournament starts later this week. The No. 3-ranked women’s soccer team wasn’t so fortunate on Friday, when they fell to Illinois in the Big Ten tournament semifinals. It was a rare bad day: The women went unbeaten in conference play en route to the program’s 15th consecutive regular-season league title. (They also dominated the postseason awards list.) They’ll learn their NCAA seed on Monday night.
Closer to home, the No. 3 women’s volleyball team beat a pair of conference opponents—including second-place and 10th-ranked Minnesota—to extend its Big Ten lead. The Lions are 13-1 in league play, two games head of the Gophers with six matches to play. Added up, Penn State’s fall “team” sports own a combined record of 72-15-4.
Ryan Jones, senior editor