Catchin' up with Chris: Sept. 28
Sept. 28, 2009
How did you feel this weekend went? There was good news and bad news. I think of it as though we played in a little four team tournament -- ourselves, Texas A&M, Baylor and OU. We got four points out of it, and nobody else did. That is a real positive. And the good news is, if we do that every weekend, we have a really good chance to do well. However, I think we were really disappointed that we didn't get the win on Sunday, especially going back at looking at the film, I feel like we really had some chances to do so.
How do you think freshman Sophie Campise stepped up this weekend? Kylie Doniak, Niki Arlitt, and Lucy Keith were out, so we played Sophie more in the middle as opposed to defense. She played well, and her energy and intensity were up which made her excellent for us.
How do you plan on preparing for the physicality of this weekend's matches? I don't know that you can prepare for that. We have to make sure that we don't back down. Every chance we get, we have to make it a soccer game. We are best when it is a soccer game, and some other teams are probably best when it is a fight. So we want to make it a soccer game as much as we can.
How do you think the defense looked especially centered around keeper Alexa Gaul? Alexa is getting more and more comfortable in the net. I think overall, the back line is getting better at playing together. It is still a work in progress, but Erica (Campanelli) is certainly leading that group, and they are getting better.
How do you think the Big 12 has shaped up this year? Any standout teams? I think the whole conference is very even. There are no teams better than everybody else. So there is no real top end to the league. And I'm not sure there is a real bottom end either. There have been no two or three teams that you can just play and are practically guaranteed wins against. So overall, I think it is a pretty even field.
Did you plan on Kylie Doniak being the leading scorer this year? Over the last year, Kylie has consistently scored goals more than anyone else in training. So we knew she has the ability to score, it's only been a matter of getting her in position to do that.
How did the team react to their first taste of conference play? They were a little shocked at how hard it was to play two conference games. They were really good in the first one and by the end of the first half of the second one they were like, "Wow! We've never done this before!" And so the weekend was good so that they could kind of figure out how it is going to be. I think the non-conference season has prepared them, but they are still growing up.
What are the three things you are going to focus on for practice this week? Rest and recovery is a big one for us. Being really clean in our clearances under pressure and working on keeping the ball on the ground will be what we are really working on this week.