Photo: James Powel/WCSN)
Opportunity after opportunity, chance after chance, the Sun Devils are turned away in the attack while a key component to success for the Arizona State women’s soccer team looks on from the sideline.
The Sun Devils have been fighting the injury bug all season, and it’s taken tolls on the team. Juniors Aly Moon and Jazmarie Mader have both missed significant time this year due to injuries. Not being at full strength has left the team a shell of its former self.
“It’s a massive difference for our team when we don’t have them on the field,” head coach Kevin Boyd said. “Those two are arguably my best player, and my leading scorer. “
Moon has missed a number of games this year due to a nagging injury suffered early in the year, and Mader has been absent from the team’s lineup in the last two games after sustaining a concussion. The two have not played a game together since a 0-2 loss to UCLA on September 22.
Injuries aside, Boyd refuses to let injuries dictate his team’s success.
“It doesn’t mean we can’t get it done,” Boyd said. “We just have to do it in a different way. We have to ask for different people to try and step up and fill those roles.”
With the absence of Moon and Mader ASU has struggled mightily, only finding one conference win in its first seven attempts. Mader has accounted for eight goals in only 12 games, good for best on the team. The next leading scorer, sophomore Adriana Orozco, has only three.
“I don’t think the team’s mentality needs to change a whole lot,” Boyd said. “It needs to be next person up. They know that they’re not available, they know we don’t have them. The players that step on the field are the ones who need to find a way to win the game and score goals.”
With games against big-time opponents already under their belt, the Sun Devils look to finish strong against Pac-12 powerhouses Stanford and Cal, with or without these key offensive players.
“The main concern we have at this moment is finding goals,” Boyd said. “We’ve got people that have been hugely influential in scoring goals this year and they’re the ones who are out. We have people fully capable of putting the ball in the net and it’s time for them to step up and do that.”
ASU continues its weekend in Oregon against the Ducks Sunday at 1:00 p.m.