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Rutgers field hockey earn 5th ever NCAA Tournament bid

The Scarlet Knights will face the Ivy League Tournament champions in the opening round.



Photo credit Rutgers Athletics

No. 5 Rutgers field hockey (16-3) will make its fifth ever appearance in the NCAA Tournament after earning an at-large bid on Sunday night. The Scarlet Knights face Ivy League Tournament champion Harvard (15-3) in Chapel Hill, North Carolina (14-3) on Friday, November 10 at 2:30 ET. The winner will likely face UNC in the Elite Eight, the site host and No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament.

It’s a tough draw for RU after entering Sunday No. 6 in the RPI rankings. Despite only the top four teams given seeds, Rutgers is essentially the No. 8 seed. The Tar Heels are also the defending national champions and have won four of the last five national titles. The Big Ten semifinals loss for the Scarlet Knights to Maryland was crucial. The Terps earned the No. 4 seed in the NCAA Tournament after losing to Northwestern in the Big Ten championship game earlier on Sunday.

It’s the third trip to the NCAA Tournament under head coach Meredith Civico. Rutgers has earned NCAA Tournament bids in 2021, 2018, 1986 and 1984. The program is 3-4 all-time in the NCAAs and lost to Liberty in the Elite Eight in its last appearance in 2021.

The Scarlet Knights enter the NCAA Tournament with a 16-3 record that includes seven wins over ranked opponents. They finished in second place in the Big Ten and open the season with a program record 15 straight wins. They enter the NCAA Tournament with the second most wins in program history. RU is led by Big Ten Player of the Year Iris Langejans and Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year Puck Winter.

Rutgers will face Harvard for the first time ever as the Crimson enter the NCAA Tournament on a 10 game winning streak. The winner will face the winner of No. 1 seed North Carolina vs. the winner of the play-in game between William & Mary and Sacred Heart.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. pj43

    November 5, 2023 at 11:24 pm

    So, the ladies go into the tournament having lost 3 of their last 4 games against quality opponents – 2 of the losses by 1 goal. On the flip side, 7 of their regular season wins were by 1 goal. The margin for error is very thin, to say the least, given the strength of schedule. I watched the MD game on Fri and it was painful to watch them give up a 1-0 advantage in the last period. It’s been a tough season against quality teams. Hopefully, a few days off will do them good and they’ll be refreshed and ready to play their best against Harvard.

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