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No. 8 Penn State Women’s Soccer Opens Big Ten Season With 0-0 Draw Against Indiana

No. 8 Penn State women’s soccer (5-1-2, 1-0-1 Big Ten) tied Indiana (2-0-6, 0-0-1 Big Ten) 0-0 on Sunday afternoon in Bloomington.

The Nittany Lions couldn’t muster up enough offensive energy to net a goal against the Hoosiers. Despite 15 shots, six from freshman Amelia White, the game ended in a draw, and both Penn State and Indiana opened up their Big Ten seasons with one point.

How It Happened

Head coach Erica Dambach rolled out a sturdy lineup for the team’s road match against the Hoosiers. Notably, though, Dambach opted for junior Eva Alonso rather than transfer Cassie Hiatt in the starting 11. White also earned the start in her home state of Indiana.

Indiana opened up the offensive action in the fifth minute with a shot on goal, forcing Katherine Asman to make a save.

Penn State responded two minutes later with attempts from both White and Mieke Schiemann, but Hoosier goalkeeper Jamie Gerstenberg redirected both shots.

The Nittany Lions continued to push the pace on the Hoosiers’ defensive end and caused the Indiana lineup to respond with aggression. Four different Indiana players racked up individual fouls throughout the first 20 minutes of play and the game started to look fairly choppy.

In the 29th minute, White went coast-to-coast and beat nearly the entire Indiana defense, but couldn’t put power behind her shot toward Gerstenberg. The keeper made the easy save and reset the Hoosier defense.

The Indiana defense was stout against White, Ally Schlegel, and Penelope Hocking, and the three forwards struggled to combine offensively. Despite this, the Nittany Lions dominated possession and momentum but just couldn’t convert.

Neither team could tally a goal before the end of the first 45-minute half, and both squads headed into the locker room knotted at nil.

Hocking opened up the second half with a quick shot on goal during a Hoosier transition, but she sent the low-driven ball right into the hands of Gerstenberg. Ellie Wheeler and Hocking combined for another opportunity in the next possession, but Hocking was unable to get a forehead on Wheeler’s cross.

In the 55th minute, Schlegel required attention from medical staff after a head collision with an Indiana midfielder. The co-captain walked off the field under her own power but was treated for concussion-like symptoms on the sideline.

Elle Kershner ripped a shot in the 61st minute, but the attempt went high and wide of Gerstenberg’s net. Just one minute later, Hocking created a tiny gap in Indiana’s defense and sent a powerful shot toward the goal, but the crack at goal connected with the crossbar and deflected back into play. Kershner tried to clean up the deflection, but Gerstenberg scooped the ball up.

Schlegel reentered the game in the 64th minute and almost immediately assisted a White shot attempt, but freshman’s shot was off-target.

Penn State continued to knock on Indiana’s door but failed to net a goal. Indiana didn’t produce much offensive momentum in the final 25 minutes of the match, so the Nittany Lions occupied the Hoosiers’ half and tired out their defense.

White had one final opportunity against Gerstenberg in the last minute of the game and lofted a shot over the goalkeeper, but the attempt went wide. Gerstenberg then ran out the time clock, and the game ended in a 0-0 tie and both teams earned one point on the afternoon.


  • Indiana goalkeeper Jamie Gerstenberg had an incredible game. Penn State really put the pressure on the goaltender, especially in the second half, but Gerstenberg held her ground and manufactured eight saves against the Nittany Lion offense.
  • Penn State needs to find the back of the net. The team notched 15 shots, eight of them on goal, but couldn’t convert. With such a stacked offensive lineup, the team needs to work out these struggles quickly because it can’t afford to give up opportunities in such a competitive Big Ten environment.
  • This was a fairly slow start for the Nittany Lions in their Big Ten opener. Perhaps this was a result of Penn State’s nine-day break since its last game, or just an off day for the team. Either way, a lackluster performance doesn’t bode well for the Nittany Lions as they head into their biggest match of the season against No. 4 Rutgers. A one-point draw isn’t enough for such a highly ranked team against Indiana.

What’s Next?

The Nittany Lions will return to Jeffrey Field for a three-game home stint starting at 7 p.m. on Thursday, September 22, against No. 4 Rutgers. Folks can stream the ranked matchup live on the Big Ten Network.

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About the Author

Keeley Lamm

Keeley is a sophomore journalism major from Richmond, Virginia, and is one of Onward State's associate editors. She also talks about random, fun stuff on our podcast, Podward State. Keeley is a lover of grilled cheese, naps, and Kevin Jonas. If you would like to share your thoughts on the superior Jonas Brother, feel free to contact her on Twitter @lammkeeley or send your best Spotify playlist to her email [email protected]

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