Cody Cousino / Photo Editor
After recording victory No. 200 in program history Friday night against Illinois, the Ohio State women’s soccer team provided an encore on Sunday.
Behind goals from junior midfielder Tiffany Cameron, senior forward Paige Maxwell and a shutout from goalkeeper Katie Baumgradner, the Buckeyes blanked Northwestern, 2-0, at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium.
With the victory, the Buckeyes (7-3-1, 2-0-1 Big Ten), remain unbeaten in conference play.
“Anytime you’re at home, collecting those points in the Big Ten is critical,” coach Lori Walker said.
OSU opened the scoring just before halftime. In the 42nd minute, a perfectly placed through ball from sophomore midfielder Kristen Niederhaus found Cameron with only the goalie to beat. The junior midfielder finished her third goal of the season to put the Buckeyes ahead, 1-0.
Cameron said that confidence and focus are key when breaking in on goal alone.
“I just have to chill out,” Cameron said. “There were a couple opportunities I had last year where I panicked. Today, I relaxed.”
Maxwell solidified the Buckeyes’ lead with 77th minute goal. After being tripped up and losing the ball in the box, Maxwell regained her footing and fired home from 10 yards out.
The goal was Maxwell’s second of the season.
The Wildcats (1-8-0, 0-3-0 Big Ten), rarely challenged the OSU defense.
Baumgardner only needed to make two saves in order to record her third clean sheet of the season.
“Having zero goals up on the board [defensively] is big for us,” Baumgardner said. “It gives us a lot of momentum going into the next game.”
The Buckeyes will need that momentum as they continue conference play Thursday at Penn State. The Nittany Lions were picked to win the Big Ten in the preseason voting by the coaches, while OSU was selected to finish second.
Baumgardner said the team will not need to any extra motivation in getting prepared to play Penn State.
“Honestly, our team is pretty easily motivated for that game,” she said. “They are our rivals so we won’t have to do much.”
Walker said the team is starting to hit its stride offensively heading into this week.
“We jump-started our attack this weekend,” she said. “That helps us to see that [scoring] is not just going to happen, but we can make it happen and create the happenings.”
Thursday’s match against the Nittany Lions begins at 7 p.m. in University Park, Pa., at Jeffrey Field.