ND Women’s Soccer
ND faces Red Raiders, Trojans
Renee Griffin | Thursday, August 28, 2014
No. 11 Notre Dame will try to keep its hot start going this weekend against No. 16 Texas Tech on Friday and USC on Sunday in the 22nd annual Notre Dame Invitational.
Both teams will be more difficult tasks than Notre Dame’s first two opponents, Illinois and Oakland. Texas Tech is the first of several ranked teams appearing on Notre Dame’s schedule.
“[Texas Tech and Southern California] are two very physical teams,” Irish coach Theresa Romagnolo said. “They play in some different systems and are very athletic. It will be a good challenge for us.”
Nevertheless, Romagnolo said she has a great deal of faith that Notre Dame (2-0-0) can win, especially given its momentum from last weekend’s victories.
“I think we’re playing well and I’m happy with what we’re doing,” Romagnolo said. “We’re getting a little bit sharper with a little more attention to detail, which is what I want. We can continue to make more scoring opportunities going forward, and I think we can tighten it up a little bit in the back.”
Romagnolo said another week of practice has given the team time to tweak some aspects of its game, like cooperation and speed, which will make the squad even more formidable in upcoming matches.
“We’ve just worked on being a little bit sharper on our attack, playing a little bit faster defensively, being a little bit more organized and communicating better as we’re starting to get used to the personnel we have around us,” Romagnolo said.
The Irish have a variety of strengths that will assist them as they attempt to maintain their spotless record against the Red Raiders and the Trojans, Romagnolo said.
“We have some pretty good players up front in terms of pace and one-[on]-one ability,” Romagnolo said. “We’ve got great leadership players out of the back who have a lot of experience and have seen some different systems, who should be able to direct and organize the play in front of them.”
Romagnolo also emphasized that the games will be a team effort, saying she foresees contributions from every player.
“I expect a lot of everybody,” Romagnolo said. “I expect us to be strong up the middle, I expect our wide players to get forward and get crosses, I expect our forwards to make things happen in the final third [of the field] and I expect players off the bench to step up and have an impact.”