Scrolling Headlines:

Carl Pierre’s breakout performance helps UMass men’s basketball over Western Carolina -

November 22, 2017

Pipkins’ double-double leads UMass men’s basketball over Western Carolina -

November 21, 2017

Luwane Pipkins leads the UMass men’s basketball shooting show in 101-76 win over Niagara -

November 19, 2017

UMass to face tough test with Niagara backcourt -

November 19, 2017

Hockey Notebook: John Leonard on an early season tear for UMass hockey -

November 18, 2017

Clock runs out on UMass men’s soccer’s dream season in NCAA opener -

November 17, 2017

2017 Basketball Special Issue -

November 16, 2017

UMass men’s basketball prepares for transitional season in 2017-18 -

November 16, 2017

Author Viet Thanh Nguyen discusses how history and humanity is remembered -

November 16, 2017

CMASS completes seven-week discussion series -

November 16, 2017

UMass women’s basketball resets and reloads, looking to improve on last year’s record with plenty of new talent -

November 16, 2017

Matt McCall’s winding path to bring unity to UMass -

November 16, 2017

Carl Pierre is a piece to Matt McCall’s basketball program -

November 16, 2017

Why they stayed: Malik Hines, Chris Baldwin and C.J. Anderson -

November 16, 2017

McConnell chooses politics over morals -

November 16, 2017

Swipe right for love? Probably not. -

November 16, 2017

‘The Florida Project’ is a monument to the other side of paradise -

November 16, 2017

‘Thor: Ragnarok’ doesn’t have to be the best Marvel movie -

November 16, 2017

Thursday’s NCAA tournament rematch between UMass men’s soccer and Colgate will be a battle of adjustments -

November 15, 2017

Veteran belonging and the decline of American communities discussed by journalist and author at Amherst College -

November 15, 2017

Road play still daunts Minutewomen

Geoff King/Collegian

Playing at home and playing away are two very different halves to the same coin.  One side can be smooth, clean and easy to read, while the other can be scared and rough, almost impossible to figure out.

That same coin reflects the season thus far for the Massachusetts women’s soccer team.

The Minutewomen (5-8-0, 2-2-0 A-10) have fared well this season at home, posting a 3-3-0 record on Rudd Field.  On the road, however, the picture is drastically different, as the Maroon and White have only managed to muster a 2-5-0 mark.

According to head coach Ed Matz, several different factors, from a lack of consistency to a struggling bench, are hampering the team’s efforts outside their home turf.

“Playing on the road is never an easy thing to do,” Matz said.  “A couple of our road games have been flights, which adds an extra toll on you physically.  Take that and add it to the tough competition that we’ve had to face in teams like Michigan and Dayton, and you can start to see what challenges we have to go up against every time we travel.”

The obstacles don’t end for the Minutewomen there either.

“We just don’t have that deep a team,” Matz said.  “They’re young players that have a lot of trouble sustaining or elevating the flow of the game on our side of the ball.  In addition, we need to play better as a team.  We’re in A-10 play now, and we need to play mistake-free soccer in order to win.  We need to recognize what’s needed on the field in order to compete with the rest of the division.”

A key component that has been seriously lacking with the team’s performance is a clutch player named Sydney Stoll.

Stoll, who has missed most of the year with an injury, is finally back in action for the Minutewomen.  The redshirt senior has started in five games this season for UMass, and in those five games she has two goals on five shots.  Matz undoubtedly feels that she will be huge in the play down the stretch.

“She is a critical part of our team,” Matz said.  “Sydney has really helped out the team.  She’s given us a lot of offensive strength, and I feel like someone with her talent would have helped us tie or win a lot of the one-goal losses that we’ve had this season.”

The most critical aspect about her on-field play is the leadership she brings to the game.

“Her ability to lead is key,” Matz said.  “She and the rest of the seniors need to be able to lead this team.  If they can stand up and perform, the rest of the team will follow.  They only have five more games this season, and they need to work hard if they want to extend that run into the postseason.  We need to improve the consistency in our game play, both on offense and defense, and each of these seniors can help to lead the team in that direction.”

In looking ahead to the team’s game against URI this Sunday, Matz could not stress enough how important a win would be.

“This weekend’s game is pivotal,” Matz said.  “Momentum is critical, and we need to sustain that for when we come home next weekend.”

David Martin can be reached at dmmartin@student.umass.edu.

Leave A Comment