The sixth time is the charm for Redbirds’ soccer. After falling to Iowa State in five regular season matchups in the past, the Redbird’s soccer team defeated the Cyclones 4-3 in an exhibition match on Sunday at Adelaide Street field. Setting out to defend their second straight MVC title, the Redbirds took the field and scored four quick goals on their opponent in their last preseason game before the home opener on Wednesday.
“Today we did really well. We possessed the ball and we played very hard on defense. We didn’t give them anything in the attack,” junior forward Rachel Tejada said. “Which is what we wanted, and we broke it open here in the second half and scored some goals. This is how we want to play, and it’s how we play in practice so hopefully we can bring that in the next coming games. Freshman Dagny Olson scored the only goal in the game’s first half, briefly losing possession after a long run. Olson regained control and trickled past the Cyclones keeper to put ISU up 1-0.
Freshman Dagny Olson (above) scored a goal in the first period of ISU’s final exhibition game to help the ’Birds defeat Iowa State 4-3 on Sunday night.
In the second half, ISU boosted their way toward victory by scoring three goals in a span of just eight minutes. Kyla Cross started the momentum in the first minutes of the second half with an unassisted shot to put ISU up another point. Cross soon intercepted an Iowa State free kick, and played in Tejada who seized the opportunity and put the Redbirds up 3-0. In less than 40 seconds, Tejada rebounded a shot from freshman Hannah Leinert and took it to the net for a comfortable 4-0 lead.
The Redbirds then looked to the bench and gave their younger players an opportunity to take to the field. Iowa State began rebounding at the 71st minute, scoring their first goal of the game. They scored against at the 79th and 86th minute, but did not have enough to overcome the deficit and ultimately fell 4-3.
“We wanted to get some of our younger players some experience. They have to learn how to kill off a game with a lead like that, and I think they did pretty well,” head coach Drew Roff said. “Iowa State had a majority of their starters in for most of the game, and they kind of made a run late. It’s an exhibition game but we’re always looking for the result … and I’m happy with how the offense played out.”
“I think we have some smart players. Obviously they have some athleticism and some technique, but I also think they recognize what the defense is giving them. They realize if it worked once, might as well try it again,” Roff said. “We followed with something we thought we could exploit, and once you get on a roll it just picks everybody up.”
The victory makes the Redbirds a perfect 2-0 in the preseason, scoring a total of nine goals over the two games. They will officially start the season with a home opener against Miami Ohio on Friday.