By Parmida Schahhosseini
The Huskies (1-1) struggled offensively last weekend scoring only one goal in two matches despite having 29 attempts. In the game against UNC Greensboro, the Huskies outshot the opponent 24-4, but it took two overtimes to get a win. The Huskies fell 0-3 to No. 21 UCF in their season opener. The team struggled to generate any kind of offense as UCF only allowed five shot attempts. Despite the offensive drought, Baylor is not going to underestimate the opponent.
“It’s going to be neat playing a Pac-12 team,” Baylor co-head coach Marci Jobson said. “They are a team that has had a lot of success. Their coach just reached her 200th win, which is a lot of wins for a head coach. She has been a very successful coach and they are a tough physical team. They have a lot of height. There are a lot of 5-foot-10-inch kids on that roster, so it will be fun for kids like Bri Campos to see how she matches up. I just love different challenges and it’s a great RPI match for us. They always have a history of success, so it’s going to be a great match for us.”
The Bears have had recent success on the road and have only lost twice on the road in the last two seasons. Baylor hopes to take advantage of the opponents struggling offense by turning up the defense. Baylor’s team defense has allowed the Bears to win games in decisive fashion with back-to-back shutouts.
“We have a marking system, but it’s a whole effort,” senior midfielder Kat Ludlow said. “If one person’s man gets past them, you should have two or three players ready to help them in the back. When the ball gets down the field we have the whole team going back to help. We all just get behind each other and try to double down as much as we can.”
The Huskies are a physical team and put pressure on the ball. The team has allowed 17 shot attempts in two matches, but most came against UCF. Baylor’s stout backfield will be key if the Husky defense keeps the Bears offense in check.
This game will also mark the first road test for Baylor’s freshmen class. The freshmen have been key contributors with freshman midfielder Ashley York leading the way.
“I think the newcomers have done really well,” York said. “We have really strong defenders and a lot of the girls are in different positions that came in as freshmen this year. Everyone is learning really fast and doing well learning the new system.”
Baylor last played University of Washington in 2006 and lost 4-0. Baylor is a stronger team than it was in 2006. This year Baylor is a ranked team and is unbeaten in the last nine matches.