2010 Big Ten Women's Soccer Season in Review
Dec. 16, 2010
The 2010 Big Ten women's soccer season concluded with Ohio State advancing to the NCAA College Cup, marking its first national semifinal appearance in program history and the first by a Big Ten team since 2005. The third-seeded Buckeyes fell to eventual national champion Notre Dame, allowing the lone goal of the match in the 83rd minute.
Ohio State's run to the semifinals capped off the 2010 NCAA Championship for the Big Ten after it sent six teams to the tournament for the first time since 2002. Minnesota earned wins in the first and second rounds before falling in the round of 16. Penn State and Wisconsin each won their first-round contests, bowing out in the second round. Illinois and Michigan rounded out the contingent of Big Ten teams in the tournament, falling in first-round action.
Four Big Ten players closed the season with NSCAA/Performance Subaru All-America honors, led by Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and Ohio State defender Cassie Dickerson, who took home first-team laurels. Penn State midfielder Christine Nairn received second-team recognition, while Ohio State forward Paige Maxwell added third-team honors to her collection of postseason honors after earning the Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year award. Michigan State forward Laura Heyboer reached All-America status for the third-straight year, taking home fourth-team honors.
After finishing the conference season with 8-2-0 records, Ohio State and Penn State shared the 2010 Big Ten Championship, marking the Buckeyes' first and the Nittany Lions' 13th-straight. Along with earning the conference Offensive and Defensive Player of the Year awards, Ohio State also earned the Big Ten Coach of the Year award as Buckeye coach Lori Walker reeled in the second award of her career. Illinois newcomer Vanessa DiBernardo rounded out the individual award winners, receiving Big Ten Freshman of the Year accolades.
The Big Ten amassed 63 wins and a .624 winning percentage over non-conference opponents in 2010, including seven wins in the NCAA Championship.