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Then-freshman Courtney Powell lines up for a shot against UNI goalkeeper Jami Reichenberger. Iowa State lost 0-1.

Iowa State opened Big 12 play this weekend against the Texas Christian Horned Frogs on Friday, and the No. 22 Texas Tech Red Raiders on Sunday, the Cyclones went 0-1-1 this weekend after a tie against TCU and a loss to Texas Tech, 3-0. 

Each team in the Big 12 presents a unique set of challenges that their opponents must be prepared to face. The Big 12 is also a very tough league as there are four teams ranked in the conference and one team receiving votes (TCU).

Cyclones allowed their opponents too many scoring chances 

Iowa State was outscored by three goals this weekend, but that margin could have been much larger. The Cyclones' defense allowed their opponents to take 55 shots and 21 of those shots were on goal. Dayja Schwichtenberg had 16 saves this weekend, including a career-high eight saves in both games. Along with all of that, their opponents had 19 corner kicks.

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Iowa State goalkeeper Dayja Schwichtenberg takes a goal kick after a save against UNI Sept. 16. Iowa State lost 0-1.

The offense was efficient but had minimal chances 

On paper, TCU and Texas Tech both looked like outstanding teams defensively, and that definitely showed this weekend. Coming into this weekend's games, the Cyclones on average took 12 shots a game and put five of them on goal.

This weekend, the Cyclones did a good job of putting their shots on goal, as they put 86 percent of their shots on goal.

However, they only took seven shots in total against TCU and Texas Tech. If the Cyclones don't create more opportunities to score, they could be in for a long season.

Iowa State lost the battle for possession

There isn't an official time of possession statistic in NCAA soccer, but there are three statistics that give an idea of which team possessed the ball more throughout the game. Those statistics are the number of shots, shots on goal and corner kicks taken. In both games this weekend, the Cyclones opponents led in all of those statistics.

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Senior midfielder Emily Steil kicks the ball back into play during the game against UNI on Sept. 16. ISU lost 0-1.

To be specific, the Horned Frogs and Red Raiders took 48 more shots in total than the Cyclones, 15 more shots on goal and had 16 more corner kicks.

While the Cyclones were competitive throughout both games this weekend, the Horned Frogs and Red Raiders had the momentum against the Cyclones this weekend.

The schedule will only get tougher for the Cyclones from here on out, as five of their seven remaining opponents have a winning record or have at least four wins on the season.

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