(Photo: James Powel/WCSN)
The Arizona State Women’s Soccer team (4-2-1) hosts the Cal State Fullerton Titans (3-4-0) on Friday in what will be their first home game in nearly two weeks.
Arizona State is coming off a 3-0 victory against Northern Illinois Sunday, and will look to regain their early season momentum. The Sun Devils started the season 3-0-1, but then took consecutive upset losses to the University of Denver and the University of San Francisco, respectively.
“No one likes to lose,” head coach Kevin Boyd said about Friday’s loss, “especially when you lose and you outshot someone 20-7, and it was our second game doing that. There was as much frustration as there was anything else.”
However, coach Boyd did take a positive stance on the team’s response to the defeat.
“I really liked that the team pointed thumbs inward, and said ‘I gotta do’ and focused on what they need to do,” he said.
The Sun Devils were able to get back on the right track with Sunday’s shutout win, one that was just as important for anyone as it was for the new starting freshman goalkeeper, Emma Malsy.
“It was surreal,” Malsy said about the victory Sunday, her first win as a starter. “I didn’t know I was playing this weekend, so it was obviously a dream come true. I’ve dreamed of playing collegiate soccer my whole life,” she said.
This Friday will be Malsy’s first home start. However, she did play the second half of their last home game against Denver, in which they lost 3-1.
Coach Boyd expressed his confidence in the decision to go with her as their starter.
“I’d say the greatest asset[s] she has [are] her emotions, her ability to just cope with things coming at her, her resilience,” Boyd said. “I think she just steps in and goes for it. She’s extremely coachable which helps. She doesn’t beat herself up or get down too much…. it’s allowed her to stay pretty upbeat and focused on what she needs to do.”
Additionally, junior forward Jazmarie Mader enters Friday as the leading scorer in the Pac-12 with six goals. She has scored in every game for the Sun Devils this season with the exception of the opener.
“I’m working on playing with my other teammates,” Mader said. “It’s not all about me really, I’m just trying to get the whole team on the same level.”
The match will kick off at 4:00 pm Friday, and will be the Sun Devils’ final non-conference game of the season.