Takeaways: Cyclones struggle at chance-creation

The Iowa State soccer team huddles together before the match against Texas Tech on Oct. 14.

Nick Flores

Iowa State soccer went 0-2 over the weekend having lost to Baylor and Oklahoma in two matches that could have gone either way, but came up short after missed chances.

The Cyclones record now sits at 4-11 as they are set to play their last match of the regular season this week against Kansas State on Thursday.

Another late goal conceded by the Cyclones proved to be the difference against Oklahoma as that, in recent times, seems to be a reoccurring event in games. Both games against Baylor and Oklahoma also saw the Cyclones get out-shot by their opposition but the team was able to keep it close until the second half. 

Last minute losses

The loss against Oklahoma was not the first match this season that the Cyclones conceded in the dying minutes of the match. Recalling upon the closely contested game against Texas Tech, the Cyclones conceded in the 85th minute which saw them lose 2-1 earlier in the season.

The Cyclones lost in the 89th minute against Oklahoma after holding off the Sooners for nearly all 90 minutes. Although the team was not able to create the greatest of chances against the Sooners, they did well to absorb pressure and not allow the Sooners to find the back of the net nearly all game. 

The Sooners registered a total of 19 shots with 12 on target which in itself shows just how attack-minded the team was on the day. Playing in rainy conditions certainly made it even more difficult for the Cyclones to defend, but they were able to hold their shape and not allow a goal until late on. 

These last minute losses really hurt the team, considering anything could have happened had the match gone into overtime. Although the Cyclones did not pose much of an attacking threat with only two shots on target during the game, one clear chance could have sent them to victory.

There is no clear-cut way to prevent last any minute goals besides staying solid defensively and trying to do everything right, but even then one mistake or error can see the ball go into the back of the net. 

Creating chances 

The Cyclones have shown how well they can attack the opposition early on this season and it is clear they can pose a threat on a most days.

There have been matches such as the match against Drake were they had 26 shots with 13 on target, but there has also been matches like this weekend where the team only put up three shots on target in both games combined.

Having just three shots on target combined in two games is not a statistic that Iowa State head coach Matt Fannon will be fond of, but to stay as strong defensively as the team did is certainly something to takeaway from those matches. 

It is tough for any team to get past the defenses of Baylor and Oklahoma given the physicality that Baylor brings on the pitch and the athleticism of the Oklahoma side. While facing two tough opponents over the weekend, the team would have surely liked to have created more chances like they know they can. 

The loss against Oklahoma marked the Cyclones’ fifth loss in a row and the third game in a row having gone scoreless. In order to turn this around the team will have to be a their best away from home against Kansas State. 

There is still a chance for the Cyclones to qualify for the Big 12 Championship with a win this week and a Kansas loss, but the team will have to be focused on the task at hand on Thursday evening.

The Cyclones face the Kansas State Wildcats at 7p.m. Thursday in Manhattan, Kansas.