Iowa Hawkeyes field hockey

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Iowa Hawkeyes
Iowa Hawkeyes athletic logo
UniversityUniversity of Iowa
ConferenceBig Ten Conference
Athletic directorBeth Goetz
Head coachLisa Cellucci[1]
Assistant coachesMichael Boal, Jess Barnett,
CaptainEsme Gibson
FieldCapacity: 1,000
LocationIowa City, Iowa
Student sectionHawks Nest
Fight songFight For Iowa
MascotHerkey The Hawk
NCAA Tournament championships
NCAA Tournament Runner-up
1984, 1988, 1992
Conference Tournament championships
1981, 1994, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2019
Conference regular season championships
1981, 1982, 1983, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1992, 1995, 1996, 1999, 2004, 2019, 2021

The Iowa Hawkeyes field hockey team is the intercollegiate field hockey program representing the University of Iowa. The school competes in the Big Ten Conference in Division I of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA). The Iowa field hockey team plays its home games at Dr. Christine H.B. Grant Field on the university campus in Iowa City, Iowa. The Hawkeyes have won 16 conference championships (13 in the Big Ten), six Big Ten tournament titles, and the 1986 NCAA Championship, making it the first Midwestern university to win a national title. As of 2014, the team is coached by Lisa Cellucci.


Field hockey has been a varsity sport at the University of Iowa since 1973, before that field hockey was a club sport. Iowa was a leader in early implementation of the Title IX legislation, which was passed in 1972. Christine Grant, PhD, was coach in 1973 and 1974 before she retired from coaching to become Iowa women's athletics director and a national voice for women in sport. She was also president of the Association for Intercollegiate Athletics for Women (AIAW) - which was the governing organization for women's intercollegiate athletics before the NCAA took over. From 1981 to 1989 and again since 1992, the Hawkeyes have been members of the Big Ten Conference, while they participated in the Midwestern Collegiate Field Hockey Conference (MCFHC) during the 1990 and 1991 seasons. Iowa is one of the most accomplished field hockey programs in the Big Ten, with 16 claimed conference championships (13 in the Big Ten), six conference tournament titles, and 11 NCAA Final Four appearances to its credit.[1] In 1986, the Hawkeyes became the first field hockey team from the Midwest to win the national championship, when they beat New Hampshire 2–1 in double overtime in the NCAA title game.[1][2][3] Additionally, Iowa has cumulatively amassed a total of 85 national All-Americans, 152 regional All-Americans, and 162 All-Conference selections. In program history, the Hawkeyes have had a total of only five head coaches: Margie Greenberg (1977), Judith Davidson (1978–87), Beth Beglin (1988–99), Tracey Griesbaum (2000–13), and Lisa Cellucci (2014–present). In addition to Cellucci, who is herself a former Iowa player, Hawkeye alumni have attained the position of head coach at numerous other NCAA programs, including Ball State (Annette Payne), Dartmouth (Amy Fowler), Indiana (Amy Robertson), Kent State (Kerry [Horgan] Devries), Michigan (Marcia Pankratz), Princeton (Kristen Holmes-Winn), Rutgers (Liz Tchou), Stanford (Lesley Irvine), and Virginia (Michele Madison and Missi Sanders).[1]

Season-by-season results[edit]

The 2010 Iowa field hockey team in action at Penn State
The 2011 Iowa field hockey team in action against Penn State

In 1973, five Hawkeyes were selected to play on the all-Iowa college team: Sue Lewis, Caroline Emrich, Sue Bouch, Liz Ullman, and Robyn Linn. The 1974 season, coached by Christine Grant, had a 1–6–4 record. Two Hawkeyes were selected to play on the State Field Hockey team: Liz Ullman and Sue Bouck. The 1975 team, coached by Margie Greenberg, had a 3–6–2 record. The 1976 team's record was 9–5–2. Three Hawkeyes advanced to the State Team that year: Carla Seltzer, Barb Resnick and Karen Zamora. Karen Zamora was then selected as a qualifier for the National Field Hockey Tournament.

Year Head Coach Overall Pct. Conf. Pct. Conf.
1977 Margie Greenberg 17–5–3 .740 AIAW regional tourn.
1978 Judith Davidson 12–9–4 .560 AIAW regional tourn.
1979 17–8–1 .673 AIAW national tourn.
1980 19–7–1 .722 AIAW national tourn.
1981 25–5–1 .823 3–0 1.000 1st AIAW national tourn.
1982 21–2 .913 6–0 1.000 1st NCAA 2nd Round
1983 19–3–2 .833 9–1 .900 T1st NCAA 2nd Round
1984 17–5–3 .740 8–1–1 .850 2nd NCAA Runner-Up
1985 19–4–1 .813 9–1 .900 T1st NCAA 2nd Round
1986 19–2–1 .886 9–1 .900 1st NCAA Champions
1987 17–5–2 .750 8–0–2 .900 1st NCAA Final Four
1988 Beth Beglin 19–6 .760 6–2 .750 2nd NCAA Runner-Up
1989 19–2–2 .870 9–0–1 .950 1st NCAA Final Four
1990 20–4 .833 9–1 .900 1st NCAA Final Four
1991 17–2–1 .875 10–0 1.000 1st NCAA 2nd Round
1992 20–1 .952 10–0 1.000 1st NCAA Runner-Up
1993 18–4 .818 8–2 .800 2nd NCAA Final Four
1994 15–8 .652 6–4 .600 3rd 1st NCAA Final Four
1995 16–4 .800 10–0 1.000 1st 2nd NCAA 1st Round
1996 18–3 .857 10–0 1.000 1st 2nd NCAA 1st Round
1997 8–10 .444 4–6 .400 4th T5th
1998 10–10 .500 4–6 .400 T4th T3rd
1999 19–3 .864 9–1 .900 1st 2nd NCAA Final Four
2000 Tracey Griesbaum 12–8 .600 3–3 .500 T3rd T3rd
2001 13–5 .722 3–3 .500 T4th 2nd
2002 9–8 .529 2–4 .333 T4th T5th
2003 11–8 .579 2–4 .333 5th T5th
2004 13–8 .619 5–1 .833 T1st 2nd NCAA 1st Round
2005 10–8 .556 3–3 .500 T3rd T5th
2006 12–9 .571 2–4 .333 5th 1st NCAA 1st Round
2007 17–4 .810 4–2 .667 3rd 1st NCAA 1st Round
2008 18–5 .783 4–2 .667 2nd 1st NCAA Final Four
2009 9–10 .474 3–3 .500 4th T3rd
2010 3–14 .176 0–6 .000 7th T5th
2011 11–5 .688 4–2 .667 T2nd T3rd NCAA 1st Round
2012 14–7 .667 4–2 .667 T2nd T3rd NCAA 1st Round
2013 13–8 .619 2–4 .333 5th 2nd
2014 Lisa Cellucci 11–7 .611 4–4 .500 T5th T5th

Season-by-season results through the end of the 2014 season[1][4][5][6][7]

Awards and accolades[edit]

National championships[edit]

Iowa has been well represented at the NCAA Championships, appearing 22 times with 11 Final Four appearances. In 1986, the Hawkeyes beat conference rivals Northwestern en route to the Final Four. There, they shut out Penn State 2–0 and topped New Hampshire 2–1 for their first national championship, becoming the first women's team at the university to win an NCAA Championship.[1]

Year Coach Opponent Score Record
1986 Judith Davidson New Hampshire Wildcats 2–1 19–2–1

Conference championships[edit]

Iowa has won 16 conference titles, 13 in the Big Ten Conference and three in the Midwest Collegiate Field Hockey Conference (MCFHC).[1]

Year Coach Conference Record Overall Record Conference NCAA Result
1981 Judith Davidson 3–0 25–5-1 Big Ten -
1982 6–0 21–2 Big Ten NCAA 2nd Round
1983 9–1 19–3–2 Big Ten NCAA 2nd Round
1985 9–1 19–4–1 Big Ten NCAA 2nd Round
1986 9–1 19–2–1 Big Ten NCAA Champions
1987 8–0–2 17–5–2 Big Ten NCAA Final Four
1989 Beth Beglin 9–0–1 19–2–2 MCFHC NCAA Final Four
1990 9–1 20–4 MCFHC NCAA Final Four
1991 10–0 17–2–1 MCFHC NCAA 2nd Round
1992 10–0 20–1 Big Ten NCAA Runner-Up
1995 10–0 16–4 Big Ten NCAA 1st Round
1996 10–0 18–3 Big Ten NCAA 1st Round
1999 9–1 19–3 Big Ten NCAA Final Four
2004 Tracey Griesbaum 5–1 13–8 Big Ten NCAA 1st Round
2019 Lisa Cellucci 7–1 17-4 Big Ten NCAA 2nd Round
2021 7–1 17-3 Big Ten NCAA 2nd Round
16 Conference Championships
13 Big Ten Championships, 3 MCFHC Championships



   First-team selection 

   Second-team selection 

   Third-team selection 


Olympics Player Country
1984 Beth Beglin  United States
1988 Beth Beglin  United States
Mary Koboldt
Donna Lee
Marcia Pankratz
Patty Shea
1996 Kris Fillat  United States
Kristen Holmes
Marcia Pankratz
Patty Shea
Liz Tchou
Andrea Wieland
2008 Barb Weinberg  United States

Awards and accolades through the end of the 2014 season[1][4][8]


Dr. Christine H.B. Grant Field during a game in 2011

Iowa has played its home games at Dr. Christine H.B. Grant Field since its construction in 1989. Originally named Hawkeye Field Hockey Field, in 1991 the stadium was renamed in honor of Christine Grant, the founder of the Iowa field hockey program and former Women's Athletics director of the university. Grant Field was rededicated in 2006 after the completion of significant renovations that included a new playing surface, a permanent grandstand, new concession facilities, restrooms, and a press box.[9] Described by former Michigan field hockey player and current Big Ten Network analyst Kara Lentz as "the best facility in the Big Ten", Grant Field has witnessed a 40-game Iowa home winning streak in addition to undefeated Hawkeyes home campaigns on six separate occasions. The stadium's official capacity is 1,000, while its all-time single-game attendance record stands at 1,339, which was set during a game against Penn State on October 24, 1993.[1][9]

Title IX Activism[edit]

In the wake of the firing of former University of Iowa Field Hockey Coach Tracey Griesbaum on August 4, 2014, current players Chandler Ackers and Natalie Cafone joined former players Jessy Silfer and Dani Hemeon in filing a Title IX complaint with the U.S. Department of Education.[10] Coach Griesbaum was terminated after former players levied a series of allegations against her coaching methods and the culture within the field hockey program.[11] Despite an internal investigation by the university determining that she had not violated any university policy, Griesbaum was fired just days before the start of the 2014 season.[11]

At the heart of the complaint filed with the Office of Civil Rights (OCR), the agency responsible for overseeing Title IX compliance within the Department of Education, are allegations that the University of Iowa's Athletic Department engages in discriminatory practices and decision-making, often resulting in the removal of highly qualified female coaches from female programs. The student-athletes further allege that the removal of top female coaches deny to female athletes educational benefits protected under Title IX.[12]

As provided by Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, "[n]o person in the United States shall, on the basis of sex, be excluded from participation in, be denied the benefits of, or be subjected to discrimination under any education program or activity receiving Federal financial assistance."[13] As a state institution of higher education, the University of Iowa is subject to the provisions of Title IX.

While Title IX compliance issues are commonplace in collegiate athletics, and generally center on such things as equal opportunity to participate, and access to equal facilities, the complaint submitted by the University of Iowa Field Hockey players is unique in its interpretation of gender discrimination.[12] The players contend that Coach Griesbaum was terminated for engaging in the same coaching methods and practices utilized by male coaches.[11] The student-athletes go on to claim that by holding female coaches and student-athletes to different standards than their male counterparts – standards largely shaped by sex stereotypes – the school undermines the success of women's programs, and denies female student-athletes the opportunity to learn from top coaches, and compete at the highest level.[11]

Many of the practices and standards challenged in the complaint are rooted in a paternalistic view of women's athletics. The Title IX complaint cites numerous examples of double standards that exist within the University of Iowa's Athletic Department. For instance, the student-athletes note that the university places a higher level of expectation on female coaches of women's programs to manage players' minor injuries and emotional sensitivities. The complaint alleges a pattern of negative consequences for women coaches for failure to adequately respond to complaints from parents and players.[14]

Conversely, the university is more likely to give male coaches the benefit of the doubt when faced with accusations of wrongdoing. For example, thirteen football players were hospitalized with rhabodomyolysis, a stress-induced degenerative muscle syndrome, after an arduous off-season workout in 2011.[15] Despite the very serious physical injuries facing these football players, the University of Iowa stood by the coach involved in the incident, and he was later named "Assistant Coach of the Year."[16]

Some feminist commentators suggest that the current model of sport is designed for men's interests, and that women's athletic pursuits are less competitive, and more recreational.[17] Advocates of this position would acknowledge real differences between men and women, and construct an athletic system that creates substantive equality between the sexes.[18] Under this view of gender equity, one might be able to argue that different coaching methods are necessary to provide both male and female athletes with similarly positive collegiate athletic experiences.

However, this Title IX complaint filed with the OCR is based on a formal equality approach to gender equity.[19] The University of Iowa Field Hockey student-athletes' allegations are remarkable because it challenges assumptions that would hold female and male student-athletes and coaches to varying levels of competitiveness and standards of behavior. As Ackers and Cafone have made clear, one major draw for many athletes to the University of Iowa Field Hockey program was the opportunity to play under Coach Griesbaum, and be pushed every day to reach their personal and athletic potential.[20] The student-athletes agree, "we want to be made better every single day" and "we don't want to be coddled like little girls."[11] The complaint's premise confronts stereotypes that greatly shape expectations for male and female student-athletes and coaches in college sports.

For their efforts on behalf of gender equality, Ackers, Cafone, Silfer, and Hemeon received the Jean Y. Jew Women's Rights Award.[21] The complaint has sparked a national conversation on double standards that exist for female coaches and student-athletes in collegiate athletics. Although not directly tied to the complaint filed by Ackers, Cafone, Silfer, and Hemeon, the OCR began an audit of the University of Iowa Athletic Department in response allegations of unfair treatment of female student-athletes on April 11, 2016.[22]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i "2014 Iowa Field Hockey Guide". University of Iowa. Archived from the original on 9 November 2014. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
  2. ^ Thomas, Paul. "Tasch Backstops U-M to First Women's NCAA Team Title". University of Michigan. Archived from the original on 4 July 2013. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
  3. ^ Szafranski, Nick (September 6, 2011). "1986 field hockey nat'l champs honored during Iowa victory". The Daily Iowan. Archived from the original on 9 November 2014. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
  4. ^ a b "Big Ten Field Hockey Record Book" (PDF). Big Ten Conference. Archived from the original (PDF) on 24 October 2014. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
  5. ^ "2014 Field Hockey Standings". Big Ten Conference. Archived from the original on 6 October 2014. Retrieved 5 December 2014.
  6. ^ "2014 Big Ten Conference Field Hockey Tournament". University of Michigan. Archived from the original on 5 December 2014. Retrieved 5 December 2014.
  7. ^ "Three Big Ten teams make 2014 NCAA Field Hockey Tournament". Big Ten Network. Archived from the original on 5 December 2014. Retrieved 5 December 2014.
  8. ^ "Eleven Big Ten Players Earn NFHCA All-America Honors". Big Ten Network. December 1, 2014. Archived from the original on 5 December 2014. Retrieved 5 December 2014.
  9. ^ a b "Dr. Christine H.B. Grant Field". University of Iowa. Archived from the original on 7 October 2014. Retrieved 23 October 2014.
  10. ^ Iowa Players File Title IX Complaint, ESPNW (Feb. 5, 2015), .
  11. ^ a b c d e Id.
  12. ^ a b Kate Fagan, Why The Iowa Field Hockey Title IX Complaint Is A Huge Deal, (Feb. 5, 2015), .
  13. ^ Bartlett, Rhode & Grossman, Gender and Law: Theory, Doctrine, Commentary 257 (6th ed. 2013).
  14. ^ Iowa Players File Title IX Complaint, ESPNW (Feb. 5, 2015), .
  15. ^ Iowa Players Battling Muscle Disorder, ESPN (Jan. 26, 2011), .
  16. ^ Ferentz Awards Doyle Assistant of the Year, The Gazette (Mar. 31, 2014), .
  17. ^ Bartlett, Rhode & Grossman, Gender and Law: Theory, Doctrine, Commentary 264 (6th ed. 2013).
  18. ^ Id. at 145.
  19. ^ Id. at 1.
  20. ^ Josh O'Leary, Field Hockey Players: UI Leaders 'Shut Us Down,' Iowa City Press-Citizen (Feb. 11, 2015), .
  21. ^ Jeff Charis-Carlson, Title IX Complaint Leads to Honors for UI Field Hockey Players, Iowa City Press-Citizen (Apr. 1, 2016), .
  22. ^ Jeff Charis-Carlson, Feds Visit Campus to Investigate University of Iowa Athletics, Iowa City Press-Citizen (Apr. 10, 2016), .

External links[edit]

Media related to Iowa Hawkeyes field hockey at Wikimedia Commons