ISU soccer attempts to get back on the right track in the Big 12


Brian Achenbach/Iowa State Daily

No. 14 senior midfielder Meredith Skitt fights for control of the ball during Iowa State’s 0-0 double overtime tie with the Jayhawks on Oct. 4 at the Cyclone Sports Complex.

Trey Alessio

An obvious highlight for the ISU women’s soccer team this season was the win against No. 10 ranked Pepperdine on Aug. 30 in Malibu, Calif. 

The Cyclones were riding high and full of excitement for what the rest of the season could bring, but the season didn’t exactly unfold as the team might have hoped. Iowa State dropped five of the next seven games, two of which were shutout losses to Texas Christian and Oklahoma.

But the Cyclones still have faith heading into a doubleheader against Kansas and Baylor this weekend that they can get on track in the Big 12 and in their season.

“Some of the other games may not have been the wake-up call that they needed,” said ISU coach Tony Minatta. “But I think after this weekend, they are definitely understanding of where they’re at and what they need to do to be successful.”

Last year, Iowa State only won one Big 12 conference game — and it came against TCU — so it would mean a profound amount to get some key Big 12 wins at home moving forward.

“Getting those two wins [Baylor and Kansas] would take a little pressure off, because you don’t want to continue to get that slide because then every game becomes more and more important,” Minatta said. “To open up, especially at home, with two wins would hopefully get us back to where we were at in the earlier part of the season.”

The main focus at practice this week for Iowa State has been competition. Players participated in one-on-one and two-on-two drills to try to get back in the mindset of where the team was after defeating Pepperdine.

“I think we’re always striving to be more competitive with each other,” said junior Lauren Roeling.

Minatta said a return to that “competitive mode,” will hopefully set his team back on the right track. 

“I don’t want to put anything into any type of result. We just want to take the field, we want to start strong, we want to maintain our defensive discipline and we want to attack with more purpose with everybody doing their job,” Minatta said. “That’s the main goal, because if that happens, then that’s going to get us back to where we were at.”

Sophomore Sasha Stinson also said winning their first two Big 12 games at home would mean a lot.

“It would just push us in the right direction, give us the confidence and show us that we can actually do it, and I think that’s that little push that we need,” Stinson said.

The Cyclones will take on the Baylor Bears on Friday, Oct. 2, at 7 p.m. in Ames. The Kansas Jayhawks will follow on Sunday, Oct. 4, at 1 p.m.