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Syracuse field hockey is heading back to the NCAA Tournament.
No. 9 Syracuse (13-5, 4-2 Atlantic Coast) will face fourth-seeded Penn State (14-5, 6-2 Big Ten) in the first round of the NCAA Tournament on Friday, Nov. 12. The Orange fell to this season’s conference champions, North Carolina, 4-1 in the semifinals of the ACC tournament — with the conference title, the Tar Heels automatically qualified for the NCAA Tournament.
The berth is Syracuse’s 15th in program history and the 12th in Ange Bradley’s 15-year tenure as head coach. The Orange won the national title in 2015 after making the championship game the year before. SU is 17-13 all-time in NCAA Tournament games.
The Orange will face the Nittany Lions in College Park, Maryland at noon. The winner of the match-up will play the winner of Virginia and Maryland for a chance to advance to the Final Four.
Syracuse started the season at No. 14 in the pre-season National Field Hockey Coaches Association poll before opening the season 2-2, followed by a nine-game winning streak that included beating ranked opponents in then-No. 3 Boston College and then-no. 5 North Carolina.
Syracuse’s offensive line includes First Team All-ACC members Quirine Comans and Pleun Lammers. Six players, including Comans and Lammers, notched five or more goals throughout the season with Syracuse’s high-pressing offense. Comans and Eefke van den Nieuwenhof both lead the Orange with nine goals this season.
Penn State ended the season with a 14-5 record and started hot in the Big Ten Tournament. The Nittany Lions defeated No. 6 Maryland in the first round 3-2 but fell to No. 3 Rutgers 2-1 in the semifinals. Against Syracuse, Penn State leads the all-time series 24-4-1 but the two teams have not met since 2014.
Sophia Gladieux leads Penn State with 36 points, 17 goals and two assists — she was also selected to the All-Big Ten’s first team. Anna Simon follows Gladieux with 33 points, 14 goals and five assists. Mackenzie Allessie rounds out the top three for the Nittnay Lions with 30 points, nine goals and a team-high 12 assists.
This will mark Penn State’s 29th appearance in head coach Char Morett-Curtiss’s 35 seasons at Penn State.
The first two rounds of the regional tournament will be held in Maryland. Ann Arbor, Michigan will host the quarterfinal games at the University of Michigan with the semifinals and title game on Nov. 19 and 21.
The post Syracuse to play Penn State in 1st round of NCAA Tournament appeared first on The Daily Orange.