COLUMBUS, Ohio – Following a 16-6 win against Cincinnati on Friday, the Ohio State women’s lacrosse team is back for its home opener on Sunday, Feb. 10 at 3 p.m. inside the Woody Hayes Athletic Center, beginning a six-game homestand. The Buckeyes host the Detroit Mercy Titans, and action will be available live on BTN Plus.
|Ohio State vs Detroit Mercy • The Basics|
|Date:||February 10, 2019|
|Time:||3 p.m. ET|
|Venue:||Woody Hayes Athletic Center | Columbus, Ohio|
|Game Notes:||Ohio State | Detroit Mercy|
|All-Time Series:||Ohio State leads, 7-0|
|Last Meeting:||Ohio State won, 20-5, in Columbus (Feb. 16, 2018)|
FOLLOW THE BUCKEYES
• All Ohio State home games will be streamed on BTN Plus this season, featuring play-by-play and color analysis from professional announcers and Buckeye alumni.
• Fans must purchase a BTN Plus membership in order to watch. Both monthly and annual packages are available at BTN2Go.com.
LAST TIME OUT
• The Buckeyes earned a win in their season-opener against the Cincinnati Bearcats at the Gettler Stadium on Friday, 16-6. The offensive dominance was led by sophomore Sophie Baez and junior Liza Hernandez, who each scored four goals.
• Junior Jill Rizzo put up a solid performance in goal, stopping 16 shots and denying all eight of Cincinnati’s free-position attempts. Rizzo was especially stellar in the second half, making 10 saves.
• Ohio State converted on 7-of-9 free-position shots.
• The first game of the season brought more firsts for the squad: senior Hannah Gantt, sophomore Sophie Baez and freshmen Chloë Johnson and Clare Johnston made their first career starts. Baez, Johnson and Johnston also scored their first career points.
IN A NUTSHELL
• Eighty-six percent of the offensive effort from last year returns to the lineup for the 2019 season, including 100 percent of the assists led by senior Sara Dickinson, who added 20 helpers. Eighty-two percent of the goals last season were scored by Buckeyes who are back on the team for another season.
• Also returning to the starting lineup is junior goalie Jill Rizzo, who saved a program-best 187 shots during the 2018 campaign. Rizzo was the NCAA leader in saves per game, averaging 12.47 stops and led the conference in save percentage at .503.
• Overall, OSU returns nine to the starting lineup.
• The veteran scoring duo of seniors Sara Dickinson (20G, 20A) and Baley Parrott (35G, 4A) are back for one final season in the Scarlet and Gray. Redshirt junior McKayla Conti (24G, 5A) and junior Liza Hernandez (23G, 4A) were the third and fourth-most prolific scorers on the team and return to make their mark as well.
• OSU must replace Molly Wood in the center circle, who finished her Buckeye career as the program leader with 237 draw controls.
• The Buckeyes possess 10 newcomers, including nine freshman and sophomore transfer Caroline Tatsuoka, who played for Northwestern last season.
HISTORY WITH THE TITANS
• Ohio State is undefeated against Detroit Mercy, leading the series 7-0.
• The teams met last season, on Feb. 16, 2018. The Buckeyes defeated the Titans, 20-5, in Columbus.
• On April 14, 2009, OSU and Detroit Mercy began the series history. The Buckeyes won, 21-4, on the road.
SCOUTING DETROIT MERCY
• Sunday’s game is the season-opener for Detroit Mercy. The Titans earned an overall record of 10-8, finishing with a 4-1 record in the Southern Conference.
• The Titans return eight starters from last season, including redshirt junior Kaitlyn Wandelt, who led the team with a single season-record 83 points last season. Also returning on offense is senior Lexie Kinmond, who added 68 points in 2018. The pair were the top two point producers for the team.
• Senior goalie Allison McDonough started all 18 games for Detroit Mercy last season, leading the team to its 10-8 record. McDonough was the 2018 SoCon Defensive Player of the Year, making 167 saves and earning a 12.64 GAA.
• Detroit Mercy is led by first-year head coach Megan Callahan. Previously, Callahan was an assistant coach with the Titans for two seasons.
• The Buckeyes host the most home games in program history with 10 this season in Columbus.
• Fourteen states and one province of Canada makes up the hometowns of the 2019 Buckeyes – one of the most diverse teams in the country.
• Seven players hail from New York, the most represented state on the team and home state of head coach Alexis Venechanos.
• Four players are native to Ohio – Caroline Tatsuoka (Hunting Valley, Ohio), Liza Hernandez (New Albany, Ohio), Catie Beg (Chagrin Falls, Ohio) and Jaclen Moxley (Granville, Ohio).
• This season, two pairs of sisters play on the Ohio State roster at the same time.
• Junior midfielder Sarah George and freshman midfielder MK George are siblings from Monmouth Beach, N.J.
• Additionally, junior attacker Alex Vander Molen is the older sister to freshman midfielder Mekenzie Vander Molen, both from Ada, Mich.
• Senior Erika Keselman is the younger sister of four-year letterwinner Hallie Keselman (2012-15), though the two did not play together in a season.
• Though not related, sophomores Lindsay Epstein and Riley Ewing were also teammates in high school at Walton in Marietta, Ga.
• Junior Jill Rizzo and senior Meg Camden captain the 2019 Buckeye squad, Venechanos announced in October.
• Rizzo returns to the captaincy for her second season after being named a team leader as a sophomore. Rizzo ranked eighth in the nation in saves with 187 overall last season. She notched a career-high 23 saves on March 11, 2018 in a contest with UMass.
• Camden is a first-year captain entering her senior season. She appeared in nine games last season, and saw action in all 17 games as a sophomore.
• Venechanos on the captains: “Megan and Jillian both exhibit hard work, dedication and inspiration the program both on and off the field. They both have very strong character, put the team first and lead by example.”
B1G PLAYERS TO WATCH
• Senior Baley Parrott and juniors Jill Rizzo and Liza Hernandez were tabbed as Ohio State’s Big Ten Players to Watch.
• Parrott was the team’s leading scorer last season, finding the back of the net for 35 goals in total. The Airmont, N.Y., native is No. 9 all-time in draw controls with 79, 20 away from the eighth-most in program history. She is also a two-time Academic All-Big Ten honoree and three-time Ohio State Scholar-Athlete.
• Rizzo, from Queensbury, N.Y., is one of two team captains and returns to the team as the starting goalie. Rizzo owns the program record for saves made in a season (186) and was the conference leader in both ground balls (46) and ground balls per game (3.13) last season.
• Hernandez is a local from New Albany, Ohio, and totaled 27 points last season off 23 goals and four assists in 10 games played. As a freshman, Hernandez was named Big Ten Freshman of the Week four consecutive times.
• Nine members of the team make up the 2019 Leadership Council – freshmen Clare Johnston and Chloe Johnson, sophomores Lindsay Epstein, Ali Beekhuizen and Carli Mager, juniors Emily Skrzypczak and Liza Hernandez and seniors Mackenzie Maring and McKayla Conti.
• The leadership council is made up individuals that the team goes to for guidance and assists in schedule agreement, weekend occurrences, setting goals to accomplish in areas of high intensity and achieving ultra clarity with the coaches.
B1G STAGE, B1G TEN
• Three of the seven Big Ten teams are ranked in the women’s NCAA Division I Media Poll, with Maryland leading the pack at No. 2. Northwestern is slotted seventh, while Penn State rounds out the rankings at No. 10.
• In the 2019 Intercollegiate Women’s Lacrosse Coaches Association Pre-Season Poll, four Big Ten teams rank in the Top 25. Maryland (No. 2), Northwestern (No. 7) and Penn State (No. 12) are all ranked again, as well as Johns Hopkins at No. 23.
• Those four teams also appeared in the 2018 NCAA Tournament, highlighted by top-seeded Maryland’s appearance in the semifinal round.
NEW DIGS IN THE ATHLETIC DISTRICT
• Ohio State women’s lacrosse recently moved into the brand new Schumaker Complex on OSU’s developing athletic campus. This new facility is the training “hub” for 33 Olympic sports teams, located in the heart of the Athletic District and connected to the iconic Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
• The Schumaker provides a state-of-the-art facility for the nutritional, physical and psychological development of the student-athletes on 33 teams at Ohio State. Over 800 student-athletes lift, condition, train and rehabilitate injuries in the complex, while also benefitting from nutritional and mental preparation for peak performance.
• Buckeye women’s lacrosse will be featured on Big Ten Network three times this season, twice at home and once on the road.
• The rivalry between Ohio State and Michigan will be on full display on Thursday, March 21, as the Buckeyes take on the Wolverines on network television.
• OSU will be featured on the Big Ten Network again on Thursday, April 4, against Penn State in University Park, Pa.
• The Scarlet and Gray will close out the season on network television, hosting Northwestern on Thursday, April 25.
• Game times are to be announced.
• Ohio State hosts Brown on Monday, Feb. 18 at 3 p.m. at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center. The game is set to be on BTN Plus.