MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State field hockey team (5-4) travels to the state of Michigan for two road games against MAC foe Central Michigan and No. 19 Michigan. The Cardinals are coming off a 2-0 week that spurred MAC weekly honors for Bianca Velez and Shelby Henley.
Velez earned Offensive Player of the Week honors after registering a career-high two goals in the 3-0 win over Vermont. The last time Ball State had an Offensive Player of the Week was in 2010 when Devanny Kuhn and Maura Sawicki earned the honor. Henley earned Defensive Player of the Week after posting her second shutout of the season against Vermont. The last Cardinal to earn a Defensive Player of the Week honor was Elizabeth Blaum in 2009.
Ball State has the most shutouts in the MAC with two and leads the conference in saves (75) and saves per game (8.33). The Cardinals rank second in the conference in shots per game (13.89) and third in goals scored per game (1.78), goals scored (16) and shots (125).
Freshman Lexi Kavanaugh leads the Cardinals with six goals on the season which puts her first in the MAC in goals per game (0.67). Junior Tori Widrick’s assists per game average ranks first in the league (0.57). Henley tops the Mid-American Conference in saves (71), saves per game (7.89), save percentage (77.2%) and shutouts (two).
SCOUTING CENTRAL MICHIGAN: Central Michigan (3-6) snapped a six-game losing streak with a 2-1 overtime win over UC Davis in Muncie on Sept. 27. The Chippewas are second in the MAC rankings in goals against average (2.28) and saves per game (7.33). Mary Alice Moore leads the offense with four goals on the season, including two game winners. Goalie Saide Reynolds ranks behind Henley in saves (66) and saves per game (7.33) while leading the MAC is goals against average (2.22).
SERIES HISTORY: Ball State owns the all-time series record that dates back to 1979, 40-26. The Cardinals have a 13-12 record against the Chippewas in Mount Pleasant, Mich. Central Michigan has won the last four meetings including a 5-2 win last season at the BSU Turf Field (Sept. 29, 2012).
SCOUTING MICHIGAN: No. 19 Michigan is 5-5 on the season and is coming off a split weekend after earning a 5-0 shutout over Missouri State before dropping its first conference game of the season to No. 12 Northwestern, 4-1. Michigan is 1-5 against ranked opponents this season. Rachael Mack leads the offense with nine goals for the season, including two game-winning goals. Haley Jones has spent the majority of the time in goal for the Wolverines and has one shutout and a 2.47 goals against average.
SERIES HISTORY: Michigan and Ball State have faced off since the 1980 season with the Wolverines holding a 14-5 advantage in the all-time series. The teams last played in the 2011 season when Ball State dropped a 5-0 decision at home on Sept. 17, 2011.