Iowa State fell short against TCU and Texas Tech University this weekend but showed signs of improvement on both ends of the pitch. The Cyclones fell 1-0 to the Red Raiders on Friday night and 2-1 to the Horned Frogs on Sunday afternoon.
Wimmer steps up
Freshman goalkeeper Georgia Wimmer made her first appearance in the starting 11 for the Cyclones against TCU following junior Dayja Schwichtenberg, who sustained a knee injury in the last outing against Texas Tech.
Wimmer played a very important role in the first half against TCU as she made multiple saves that kept the Cyclones level with the Horned Frogs heading into halftime.
“She went in and she was poised,” Coach Tony Minatta said. “She definitely went in and didn’t feel like a freshman that's never played before and against the number 18 ranked team in the country (Texas Tech), I thought she was great.”
Wimmer made her debut in the first half against Texas Tech after Schwichtenberg sustained her injury, which will keep her sidelined for about the next 10 days. Wimmer kept the Cyclones in the game against the Red Raiders as they fell 1-0 in double overtime. Wimmer made four saves and was able to hold off the Big 12’s top scoring attack. She also recorded six saves in the 2-1 loss to TCU on her debut.
Wimmer is a prospect for the future of the Cyclones' soccer program and has showed positive signs of what she is capable of over the weekend.
Defense holds up against top attacking sides
The Cyclones' defense was put to the test over the weekend, having faced two of the Big 12’s best attacking forces in TCU and Texas Tech.
Texas Tech was able to fire 28 shots in total with seven on target, while TCU recorded 28 shots with eight on target. With the constant pressure being applied from each team, Iowa State proved its defense is capable of holding off some of the best attacking sides in the conference.
The Cyclones were able to take the Red Raiders into double overtime and kept TCU quiet for the entire first half of the match.
“Our record doesn’t show it but we’re in every one of these games against the best teams in the country, and that's what we’re striving to do,” Minatta said.
Cyclones' attack steadily improves
Despite only netting one goal in two games this weekend, the Cyclones' attack has been finding their feet after a few tactical changes, and they are looking more and more dangerous in the attacking third each game.
Coach Minatta made the decision to play freshman Abbey Van Wyngarden at forward, and he believes she has been adjusting very well to the position.
“Abbey Van Wyngarden at forward is very special,” Minatta said. “Getting her up there has really taken things to a different level for us.”
In the Cyclones' 2-1 loss to TCU, Claudia Najera recorded her third assist, making her the team leader in the statistic this year. Najera was able to take the ball down the left wing and get a cross in, which found the foot of junior Courtney Powell for her second goal of the season.
“I saw that the middle was kind of open and I guess it was just a perfect ball and perfect run,” Powell said.
As the Cyclones continue on with the rest of the season they will constantly be searching for improvements in the attacking third, and with players such as Najera and Powell along with midfielder/forward Mira Emma, the Cyclones feel they have the potential to improve their finishing.
The Cyclones' next outing will be away at Kansas State University at 7 p.m. Friday. Streaming coverage will be available on ESPN+.