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Iowa soccer rebounds from first loss of season

BY BEN WOLFSON | OCTOBER 03, 2011 7:20 AM

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Fewer than two minutes remained in Sunday's Iowa soccer game, and the Hawkeyes led by a goal.

The 582 fans in attendance could smell blood, and they began pounding on the bleachers. A chant of "Let's go, Hawks" rose through the warm fall air.

The scene was completely different from the atmosphere at the Iowa Soccer Complex on Sept. 30, when Iowa lost its first game of the year. The 1-0 loss to Michigan halted a 12-game unbeaten streak for the Black and Gold (10-1-2, 2-1-2 Big Ten).

Iowa was outshot 20-15 and failed to score a goal for the first time all season.

 

Head coach Ron Rainey said the defeat would test the resiliency of his squad — and Iowa responded well on Sunday.

Junior Dana Dalrymple scored her fourth goal of the season in the first eight minutes of the game.

Alyssa Cosnek pushed a ball ahead to freshman Cloé Lacasse, who then crossed it to Dalrymple for the score.

"It was really important for us, because all of us didn't know how we were going to react as a group," senior goalkeeper Emily Moran said. "We didn't want to feel the way we felt on Friday. Everybody individually came in with a great mindset, and that made our group mindset very positive."

The two games for Iowa this weekend seemed to be complete opposites of one another.

The squad came out flat in the first half in the Sept. 30 loss against Michigan and didn't generate any solid scoring opportunities until late in the second half.

"We lost tonight and played a great competitor; we need to learn from our mistakes," senior midfielder Rachel Blakesley said after that match. "There was a lack of attack in the first half — we could've had more energy. We had great chances in the second half, but the Michigan defense dropped off and packed it in."

Iowa not only scored early against Michigan State, it held the lead the rest of the game while playing solid defense. The Hawkeyes were able to get contributions from all 14 players who saw action.

Whenever Michigan State came into the Black and Gold's third of the field, Iowa's defenders were able to regroup and not let the Spartans get past them.

"They were wonderful [today]," Rainey said. "There was so much energy that carried us through. When you hold a lead for 84 minutes — that's hard to do in a soccer team against a very good team. That's our best defensive game of the year."

Iowa was also successful in being able to carry its intensity for the full 90 minutes against Michigan State, something that had been lacking against Michigan.

The team came out wanting to prove itself and get a win over the Spartans, Dalrymple said.

"Getting that early goal helped us relax a little," she said. "This is how we want to play. We did a lot better getting more people involved in the attack, and we really did have a lot of chances. Moving forward, we need to continue to play this way in future games."


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