The women’s soccer team is waiting for its big break to turn the season around and accomplish its goal — to go over the .500 mark. In order to do that the team needs to start capitalizing on prime scoring opportunities, as well as adding a few notches to the ‘W’ column.
“The biggest challenge is going to be … getting that first win. It’s kind of hard to switch from a losing streak to a winning one,” said sophomore defender Sydney Cetrullo. “If we can get on the right track, we can be good to go.”
This season has already been different for the Red (0-5). The team welcomed first-year head coach Patrick Farmer, who has been working diligently to implement changes, not just in the physical game play of the girls, but in the mental arena as well.
“With our new coach, one of his main focuses has been to change the culture of our team … [head coach Patrick Farmer] always tells us to run harder,” said junior tri-captain Tori Christ. “It sounds so simple but it’s so true. If you think you are working hard to a ball but you actually run that much harder, it’s going to make a difference. He is changing the tactical and the physical aspects of the game too … He believes in us.”
Cornell played on Wednesday afternoon against Binghamton at the Bearcats Sports Complex, where it suffered a 2-1 loss. The game looked promising as senior forward and tri-captain Maneesha Chitanvis scored her first goal of the season; however, the Red was unable to capitalize on the initial momentum. The team opened the second half of the game by scoring early, with Chitanvis’s goal coming in the 49th minute to give Cornell a brief lead. Freshman forward Caroline Growney claimed an assist off the goal — awarding her her first collegiate point. About three minutes later, the Bearcats struck back with a goal off of a corner kick and in the 61st minute Binghamton capitalized again and claimed the win.
“I think that it is good that we have been outplaying our opponents but just haven’t been able to score [enough],” said junior midfielder Rachel Nichols. “I think we just need to focus on finishing and grabbing opportunities. We need to just keep working hard as a team across the field, every single position.”
The Red has its season home opener at 4 p.m. on Friday at Berman Field, where it will play against Sacred Heart University.
“I think that everyone is more committed, more focused and really excited about starting over [this year],” Cetrullo said. “They are more excited at the beginning of the season than they ever were last year.”
Cornell will hit the road once again on Sunday to play against the LaSalle Explorers in Philadelphia, Pa.
“I think it is going to be important that we come in focused and with confidence,” Christ said. “It’s a lot of physical. Being ready to go from the start to finish by playing the full 90 minutes and staying strong the whole time.”
The team will then embark on a three-game stretch in five days, before it heads into the beginning of Ivy play with a game against Columbia on Sept. 21.