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Penn State Men’s And Women’s Soccer Playoff Previews

Penn State men’s and women’s soccer are each inching closer to postseason play, so it’s time to take a look back at their seasons and preview what’s next.

The women had a more successful season than the men, but both boast tremendous talent, skill, and leadership, creating an opportunity to make some noise in the playoffs.

Penn State Women’s Soccer (10-4-3, Big Ten 5-3-2)

Penn State women’s soccer finished the season with a stellar 10-4-3 record and enter the Big Ten tournament as the No. 6 seed.

A strong start had Penn State primed for another high seed, but the Nittany Lions encountered some early-season adversity. After a slight midseason lull, they bounced back and just won three straight shutting out Ohio State, Maryland, and Wisconsin.

To officially conclude its season, Penn State drew 1-1 at Iowa (5-6-7, Big Ten 2-3-5) last Sunday when Ally Schlegel netted her 10th goal of the season.

Penn State is stacked from front to back and could be a team to put others on upset watch during the Big Ten Tournament with multiple playmakers. Most recently, Schlegel and five other Nittany Lions earned All-Big Ten honors.

Schlegel leads Penn State in points and is tied for the most goals in the conference with 10, earning first-team All-Big Ten honors. Penelope Hocking, a transfer from USC and the Trojans’ all-time leading scorer, earned an All-Big Ten team selection after posting 16 points, five goals, and six assists in her inaugural season with the Nittany Lions.

Mieke Schiemann capped off her sensational sophomore season with third-team All-Big Ten honors, which was her first career All-Conference Honor. Amelia White and Kaitlyn MacBean were each deservingly named to the All-Big Ten Freshman Team, highlighting a part of Penn State’s promising young core.

The No. 6-seeded Nittany Lions face off against No. 3rd-seeded Wisconsin (11-4-3, Big Ten 6-3-1) to kick things off. It’ll be a rematch of the team’s October 13 matchup, when the Nittany Lions claimed a home victory 3-0, with goals courtesy of Hocking, Payton Linnehan, and Elle Kershner.

The Nittany Lions need to pull off the upset on the road this time, against a host boasting Big Ten Midfielder of the Year Emma Jaskaniec.

The Nittany Lions and the Badgers will square off at 5 p.m. on Sunday, October 30. Following the quarterfinals, the tournament will continue through November 6.

Penn State Men’s Soccer (5-5-4, Big Ten 2-2-3)

The Penn State men’s soccer squad has had a much less successful season than the women, and also in comparison to its last campaign with many players returning. With one game left on the schedule, the Nittany Lions sit at 5-5-4 just one season after winning the Big Ten title.

The men’s side of things has yet to release an official bracket or postseason awards, though, Penn State is currently projected for a No. 6 or No. 7 seed as it stands.

As for Penn State, its regular season performance may not be promising on paper, but the Nittany Lions have stuck with the best of the conference numerous times. The defending Big Ten champions have the pedigree and firepower to make some magic happen in the postseason, and if the Nittany Lions catch fire, they could be tough to put out.

Peter Mangione leads the team in goals with eight, which is also good for second-most in the Big Ten. His right-hand man, Liam Butts, has seen a late-season surge, netting four goals in Penn State’s last four games. Seth Kuhn and Andrew Privett are tied for the team lead in assists with four apiece, manning the midfield attack and patrolling both ends of the pitch for the Nittany Lions.

Tyger Evans and Matthew Henderson have held down the back end, improving off last year’s campaign. Kris Shakes has been a brick wall in net all season for Penn State, posting a .735 save percentage, which is the third-best mark in the conference.

Penn State closes out its season at 1 p.m. on Sunday, October 30, against Michigan (4-9-3, Big Ten 1-5-1), which currently holds the No. 8 seed. The men’s conference tournament is slated to run from November 4 through 13.

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About the Author

Zach Donaldson

Zach is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism. He is a writer for Onward State and serves as an editor for Penn State’s CommRadio. He hails from Downingtown, Pa., or in other words "just outside of Philly." When he's not watching or ranting about Philly sports, you can probably find him at the gym. If you like sports tweets, follow him on Twitter @zachdonaldson_ and all inquiries can go to [email protected]

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