Nov. 8, 2011
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa field hockey team has earned its conference-leading 21st NCAA Tournament bid in program history. Iowa (15-4) will travel to College Park, Md., to face No. 4 Maryland (15-4) in the first round of the NCAA Tournament this weekend. The Hawkeyes will battle the Terrapins Saturday at 1 p.m. (CT). Iowa has appeared in the NCAA Tournament five of the last eight years.
"I couldn't be happier for this team," said head coach Tracey Griesbaum on the team's at-large bid. "This means a lot. I am really proud of the way they worked to get to this point. In a 16-team tournament, it is challenging to get an at-large bid. I am really excited!"
Iowa, ranked 12th nationally, has enjoyed great success in the NCAA Tournament. The Hawkeyes have now appeared in the NCAA Tournament 21 times, reaching 11 Final Fours (both are the most of any Big Ten program). In addition, Iowa won the 1986 National Championship. The Hawkeyes are 26-21 all-time in the tournament, owning the most wins of any league team in NCAA Tournament play.
In their last tournament appearance in 2008, the Hawkeyes reached the NCAA Final Four after defeating Louisville and Michigan State in the first and second rounds. Iowa lost to Maryland in the NCAA semifinals in double overtime. Louisville will host the NCAA Final Four this year. The last time Louisville hosted the Final Four was 2008.
No. 3 Syracuse (18-3) and Richmond (16-6) will also play in College Park on Saturday. The winner of both contests will play Sunday at 1 p.m. (CT) to advance to the Final Four.
The Hawkeyes have won seven of their last eight games entering Saturday's contest.