Minnesota shares Big Ten Championship with Penn State. Photo by Jeremy Olson - www.digitalgopher.com

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Gophers Claim Share of Big Ten Championship with Giant Season Finale Win

by on 26 October 2016

For the first time since the debut of Big Ten women’s soccer in 1994, the conference has tri-champions in Minnesota, Penn State, and Northwestern. Each school finished 7-1-3 in the conference, earning 24 points. This is the fourth Big Ten Championship for the Gophers, who also took the title in 1995, 1997, and 2008. Northwestern is celebrating their first ever title while Penn State claims their 18th in 19 seasons.

Sydney Squires scored two of the six goals in the win over Maryland. Photo by Jeremy Olson - www.digitalgopher.com

Sydney Squires scored two of the six goals in the win over Maryland. Photo by Jeremy Olson – www.digitalgopher.com

Minnesota won the title at home in the season finale against Maryland. Those in attendance were treated to goals upon goals while the pep band contributed to the celebration. The Gophers completely dominated the match, outshooting the Terrapins 36 to 4.

Senior Tarah Hobbs was able to tally her eighth shutout of the season without needing to make a single save. Maryland keepers Rachel Egyed and Katelyn Jensen were able to make three saves each, but were unable to do much more against the nearly relentless Gopher attack which found the back of the net a stunning six times. The 6-0 win is the biggest for Minnesota this year.

Photo by Jeremy Olson - www.digitalgopher.com

Nikki Albrecht beats the keeper for her third goal of the season. Photo by Jeremy Olson – www.digitalgopher.com

The Big Ten Women’s Soccer Tournament begins Sunday, October 30. Minnesota earned the No. 1 seed by tallying more combined points in its matches against their co-champions.

The quarterfinals take place the aforementioned Sunday. The Gophers will host No. 8 Indiana. Kickoff will be at 2:00 p.m. Other matches on Sunday include No. 2 Penn State hosting No. 7 Rutgers, No. 3 Northwestern hosting No. 6 Nebraska, and No. 4 Michigan hosting No. 5 Wisconsin. The winners will advance to the semifinals on Friday, November 4, with the highest remaining seeds hosting. The championship match will be on Sunday, November 6. The winner earns an automatic berth to the NCAA Tournament.

Watch the six goals from the Gopher’s season finale:

Julianna Gernes in the 5th minute, with an assist from Josee Stiever.

Sydney Squires in the 40th minute.

Freshman Nikki Albrecht’s third goal of the year (first from the run of play) in the 48th minute.

Kellie McGahn assisted by cousin Simone Kolander in the 66th minute.

Sydney Squires’ second goal of the night in the 72nd minute.

Freshman and alum from Washburn High School Maya Rajacich with her first collegiate goal, from a penalty, in the 78th minute.

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