ISU soccer to focus less on results, more on play


Sophomore forward Adalie Schmidt makes a pass between two West Virginia defenders midfield. The Iowa State women’s soccer team fell to No. 16 West Virginia 3-0 at their home match on Oct. 17.

Trey Alessio

The ISU soccer team has yet to score a goal in Big 12 conference play, but shooting the ball has been the focus for the Cyclones heading into the weekend.

Head Coach Tony Minatta believes his players are putting pressure on themselves to score, which limits their ability to do so.

“What we talked about is getting back to playing the style and the way we played against Iowa, Mississippi State, and, at times, against USC,” Minatta said. “We played some really good soccer and we haven’t been consistent all season, but the common denominator is we scored.”

During practice this week, Iowa State has been working with different situations, adding pressure against the clock to score with a certain number of passes. Minatta said he wants the players to start playing without thinking in terms of shooting the ball.

“Our focus is just on shooting a lot,” said sophomore Adalie Schmidt. “We’re trying to work on that as well as everyone working their hardest. We all need to come together in the game and connect our passes.”

The goal and expectation for the Cyclones is to take every chance to find a shot and take advantage of it. Iowa State is hoping to translate goals into wins, and with the remainder of the season dwindling, it needs to take home some Big 12 conference wins.

Iowa State’s opponents this weekend include Kansas [14-3, 4-2 Big 12] in Lawrence and Texas Tech [12-3-1, 2-1-1 Big 12] in Lubbock. For Iowa State [6-9, 0-5 Big 12] to make it to the Big 12 tournament, they need to win a game this weekend and beat TCU in their final home game on Oct. 31.

“There’s only one team that doesn’t make it. Right now, we have a chance to go through,” Minatta said. “We have to win, minimum, one game this weekend. If we win a game this weekend—even if we win two—it sets up that we play TCU on that Friday, our last home game, and whoever wins that game will go to the Big 12 tournament.”

The stakes are high for the Cyclones but they believe they can get the job done.

“I think our team works well under pressure,” Schmidt said. “We just need to come together as a team, play our hardest these last few games, and if we do that, we’ll put ourselves in a good place to win those games. We also need to shoot a lot.”

Minatta wants the players to stop worrying about the results and start focusing on their play. He said everything else will take care of itself.

“If you start wrapping yourself too much into ‘we have to win’ or ‘we have to score,’ you’re not going to win or you’re not going to score,” Minatta said. “You have to think more about how you’re playing, competing and coming together as a team. The results will come from there.”

Iowa State will take on Kansas Friday, Oct. 24 and Texas Tech on Sunday, Oct. 26.