ISU soccer relies on chemistry to rebound from 2014 season


Jenna Reeves/Iowa State Daily

Haley Albert poses at soccer media day.

Jenna Reeves

Despite last year’s losing record, the ISU women’s soccer team is optimistic heading into the 2015 season.

The 2014 season started strong with wins against Mississippi State and Iowa. With a close loss to USC and two more wins after beating Iowa, the team was feeling good about its future.

The Cyclones started to struggle when it came to conference games. From Sept. 26 to Oct. 26, the team lost game after game, four by just one goal.

The last game of the season presented the only conference win in 2014. 

Head coach Tony Minatta attributes the rough season to a lack of experience. He said in 2013 the team graduated 10 seniors, leaving the 2014 team young and inexperienced.

Senior and team captain Haley Albert said the team now has the opportunity to learn from the mistakes it made last year.

“Right now, we are talking about what we want as a team,” Albert said. “We have to keep a positive attitude and work hard to get better every day.”

Junior Madi Ott believes last season left the team with “some unfinished business.”

“Last year we were still learning,” she said. “The entire process was a learning experience.”

The biggest difference between this year’s team and last year’s team is the chemistry. Ott, Albert and junior Koree Willer all agree that the team is very close.

Willer said the eight freshmen fit in well and everyone has been on the same page — working hard and pushing each other.

Ott said the team hangs out on and off the field. The team even bonded during the 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup.

On the field, the team has been pushing through two-a-day practices to work on skills and to play short-sided games, all in preparation for the first two exhibition games. The first of which was Tuesday at Notre Dame, where the team lost 4-0. 

“We have a tough schedule right away,” Ott said. “It’s a good opportunity to see where we are at.”

The second of two exhibition games will be against Northern Illinois at 7:30 p.m. Saturday in Ames.