Iowa State shows major improvements in draw against Oklahoma

Kasey Opfer, midfielder, tries to control the ball during the Cyclones versus Oklahoma game at the Cyclone Sports Complex on Oct. 6. After playing in on and off rain showers the game ended 0-0 in double overtime.

Jordan Hamann

As if the women’s soccer game was a game of chess, it ended as a stalemate.

That’s what it appeared to be for this Iowa State women’s soccer team in its matchup against Big 12 foe Oklahoma as the game ended in a 0-0 draw.

Coach Tony Minatta saw major improvements despite the draw.

“We didn’t have Stella [Strohman] the last four games, so getting her back was a huge boost. She played amazing and really gave us a lot of energy. Not having Marin [Daniel] and Sasha [Stinson] obviously is huge,” Minatta said.

“I mean, we were down 10 players at one point and it’s tough not to have those players, but I think what we’re showing the resolve and the depth we do have because those players are really competing.”

The Cyclone defense was solid, as goalkeeper Antonia Reyes had some key saves at critical times during the 110-minute contest.

The Cyclone offense and defense were much improved compared to their previous game against Kansas.

“We created a lot [of] chances I thought,” Minatta said. “We defended a lot better. We were much better with our shape and positioning — stepping into the ball more and winning those one-on-one battles.”

Injuries to some key players affected the strategy the team used this game. Not having Sasha Stinson and Marin Daniel took away some much needed height.

Midfielder Brooke Tasker surely felt the void.

“Yeah, I mean [Sasha and Marin] are always on the bench and we always have our injured players down there with us.” said Tasker. “It’s good having that support from the sideline and having the team behind you.”

Two players that stepped up tonight for the Cyclones were forward Klasey Medelberg and midfielder Brooke Tasker. Other players also stepped up to fill in those missing pieces with the absence of Stinson and Daniel.

Medelberg seemed to play one her best games despite not connecting on any of her seven shots.

“I think I did a good job of getting shots off and making chances for the team,” Medelberg said. “And yeah, it was definitely frustrating having them on frame and just not coming back and going into the net.”

Tasker definitely upped her game as well, despite not being able to connect on five of her shots.

“On my part I just need to finish and I think we had a lot of great opportunities,” Tasker said. “That’s definitely something that this week we’ll be working on and getting done.”

They will plan to close the deal on Oklahoma State this weekend.

Iowa State plans to take Saturday to improve upon a lot of key areas.

“We just gotta keep defending, play for [that entire] 90 minutes and put away some of these chances. We are going to create chances against Oklahoma State,” Minatta said. “It’s a matter of closing one of those out and getting that goal.”