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No. 1 seeded MSU women's soccer prepares ahead of Big Ten Quarterfinals versus No. 8 seeded Iowa

October 28, 2023
<p>The bench of the women's soccer team cheers on players at the game against Pennsylvania State University at DeMartin Soccer Stadium on Oct. 1, 2023.</p>

The bench of the women's soccer team cheers on players at the game against Pennsylvania State University at DeMartin Soccer Stadium on Oct. 1, 2023.

Photo by Maya Kolton | The State News

Michigan State women's soccer enters the Big Ten Tournament as the No. 1 seed after winning its second consecutive conference title. The Spartans are looking to replicate the success they saw last Sunday as they host No. 8 seed Iowa for the second time in seven days for the quarterfinal round of the Big Ten Tournament.

The Spartans will be going into the tournament hoping to right some wrongs. Last season, the Spartans made it to the tournament's finals, beating Minnesota and Nebraska before falling to Penn State in the finals despite their regular season championship. If both Michigan State and Penn State win the quarterfinal games, we will see a repeat of the 2022 Big Ten Finals in the semifinals this year.

Last time out, the Spartans beat Iowa by a score of 3-0 to crown themselves as champions of the Big Ten. Goals were provided by sophomore defender Maggie Illig, graduate defender Celia Gaynor and freshman forward Bella Najera, who grabbed her seventh goal of the season.

Amongst conference success, the Spartans have also experienced a rapid rise in the US Soccer Coaches poll, entering October unranked before ending the month ranked No. 12 in the nation. The Spartans have also climbed the Top Drawer Soccer rankings, where they currently sit at the number 16 spot.

The visiting Hawkeyes finished their regular season with a record of 9-4-4 and a record of 3-4-3 in conference play. The Hawkeye's two prominent threats lie in their top scorers, junior forward Elle Otto, and redshirt sophomore midfielder Josie Durr, who both have five goals on the season.

Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. ET on Sunday, Oct. 29 at DeMartin Stadium. Streaming will be available on Big Ten Plus.

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