Coming off a thrilling 1-0 victory in penalty kicks over
the Minnesota Gophers to open up Big Ten Conference play, the University of Wisconsin women’s soccer team is now 7-1 and riding a six game win streak heading into Thursday night’s game against the Michigan State Spartans.
The Badgers pitched yet another shutout, their 5th in their last six games, in large part due to the efforts of 2017 Preseason All-Big Ten goaltender Caitlyn Clem, who now has a .78 goals against average as well as a .778 save percentage.
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The Badgers defense has been red hot and has been able to keep the team competitive in every game this season. This is very promising for the now No. 9 Badgers, who are now in the middle of what should be a competitive Big Ten Conference season. Coming to Madison Thursday is Michigan State, who is sitting at only 4-5 and already 0-2 in Big Ten play.
The Spartans have now lost three games in a row and are looking to avoid making it a fourth in Madison. This could be a big statement game for them and could get their season moving in a positive direction. They are led by their forwards Jamie Cheslik, who currently has four goals and two assists, and Lexy Warner, who has two of each.
The Spartans defense gave up six goals to the Purdue Boilermakers last week, and are likely going to be receiving a tough challenge from the Badgers, whose offense is led by dynamic underclassmen forwards Dani Rhodes and Lauren Rice — who have been a significant part of the offense as of late.
Rhodes is already up to five goals on the season and Rice has chipped in two as well as two assists. The Spartans defense will need to make drastic improvements to be able to keep those two in check. At the end of the day, however, the Badgers should prove to be quite a challenge for the Spartans.
The Badgers will face the Spartans at McClimon at 8 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 21. The game will be streamed on the Big Ten Network. Tune in to watch the Badgers go for seven consecutive wins and to continue rising in the NCAA women’s soccer rankings.