Women try to get back on track; men seek revenge

IU Express rolls into Penn State, Northwestern

POSTED AT 12:00 AM ON Oct. 14, 2005 


IU coach Mick Lyon likens his team to a train.

Recently, Lyon said the train has been struggling to keep its wheels on the track.

That track runs through Evanston, Ill., and Madison, Wis., this weekend as the Hoosiers (5-7-1, 1-4 Big Ten) take on Northwestern and Wisconsin.

"We need to find a groove," he said. "Right now we have one foot on the track but the second keeps slipping off. If we can get both feet on, we'll be cruising."

At one point this season, the IU Women's Soccer Express was cruising with a three-game winning streak. Then the Hoosiers were thrown off track by then-No. 3 Penn State, causing a two-game losing streak. After rolling over then-No. 22 Michigan for its first win against a ranked opponent this season, IU looked to be back on track but instead slipped into another two-game losing streak.

This weekend, Lyon expects the Hoosiers to pick up some steam.

"We have asked certain players to step up," he said. "They have been giving a lot, but we want more. We want everything they have."

Senior midfielder Kristen Zmijewski is one player who has stepped up all season. She leads the team in goals with four and points with 10. Zmijewski hopes her play will provide the momentum for the team to get rolling again.

"We need to win some games," she said. "(To do that), we need to play as a team. Everyone needs to take individual responsibility and come together as a team to put up some wins."

Three wins in five remaining games would put the Hoosiers on track leading into the Big Ten tournament. IU hopes to get two this weekend against Northwestern (7-6-1, 0-5-1 Big Ten) and Wisconsin (6-6-2, 1-4-1 Big Ten), who rank as the last two teams in the conference. However, sophomore forward Kristin Radcliffe said records and rankings mean nothing in Big Ten games.

"The Big Ten is so up and down," she said. "Any team can win. It doesn't matter who you are playing, every game is big. Both teams come out strong and want to win. We just need to pick it up and work for each other."

Junior forward Megan Pipkens agrees the team needs to work together. If it does, she believes the Hoosiers will pick up two wins this weekend, giving them momentum to finish the rest of the season strong and roll into the postseason full steam.

"We need to work harder," Pipkens said. "It will take effort from everyone to play 100 percent individually and as a whole. If we do that, we can definitely get wins."


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