West Virginia women’s soccer is now 1-0 in the Big 12 after taking a 2-0 home win over the Iowa State Cyclones on Friday night.
The first half belonged almost solely to the Mountaineers. Their first goal came 9:08 into the game when Jessica Lisi finished a near-perfect cross from Jade Gentile, which gave WVU their lead.
West Virginia followed up on their first score in fewer than 20 minutes, when Stefany Ferrer-vanGinkel knocked in a header amongst a gaggle of players from both teams.
The second half was much more of a battle, however, with both teams unable to convert. Senior Goalkeeper Rylee Foster’s efforts were crucial to the West Virginia victory, saving 6 Iowa State shots to keep the Cyclones scoreless.
“We knew that Iowa State was very direct and that every time they got possession of the ball they’re gonna put us under,” said head coach Nikki Izzo-Brown. “So we knew that would be their tactic. Obviously, we should have taken better care of the ball, but at the end of the day you’ve gotta give credit to Iowa State. They definitely disrupted us, and had a couple looks.”
Not only was this West Virginia’s third clean sheet in a row, but it was Fosters 36th of her career — the second-most in program history.
“We’re always on the hunt for shutouts and wins and for us to get another shut out is so important moving forward in conference play,” Izzo-Brown said. “I’m super excited for Rylee and that’s a great position for her to be in, something she should be really proud of.”
Next up, the Mountaineers have a two-game road trip against Baylor and Texas, two winning teams looking to return to the NCAA Tournament. Before they head down, Izzo-Brown says this win was critical for their team.
“That’s gonna be two tough games obviously…so we’ve got two NCAA [Tournament] teams that we’re gonna be up against,” she said. “So we’ve got to bunker down and get ready for two tough road games.”