The Trinity women’s soccer team has had an unbeaten season and is well on their way to their goal of winning the national championship. Trinity has dominated conference play, outscoring opponents 65-2 and only allowing goals in two of the conference matches. With a 15-0-1 record, the Tigers are ranked No. 3 in the National Soccer Coaches Association of America poll behind Wheaton College and Washington University in St. Louis who are ranked No. 2 and No. 1 respectively.
The Tigers attribute this success to the team chemistry and the drive they have to win. This helped them to 7-1 and 4-0 victories at home over the University of Dallas and Our Lady of the Lake University.
“This team has a ton of heart. We constantly push ourselves and each other. We also are extremely good at possession and when we play our game no one can touch us,” said junior midfielder Riah Risk. “Also, we are definitely not lacking team chemistry. I couldn’t imagine a more compatible group of girls, and we play like it.”
Even though their season has been positive thus far, they are not satisfied yet. They want to win a national championship. Losing to Hardin-Simmons early in the playoffs last year only adds to the hunger driving them forward this season. The team takes it game by game with only one goal in mind: a title. Their last two road outings resulted in 9-0 and 7-0 victories at Centenary College and Austin College.
“We really do think we have a chance to go all the way and win a title,” said first-year Brigitte Taylor.
The road to the national championship won’t be easy, though. To get that far and win, the team needs to continue to work hard and show their talent on the field.
“The girls need to play the way we know they all can and believe in themselves. Great things can happen when this team works hard for each other and believe and trust in what they are doing,” assistant coach Owen Collie said.
Besides hard work and talent, they believe that their mental toughness will also help them get a title.
“I think our mental endurance is the biggest difference. This year the program has been completely re-written; we go about everything we used to do a lot differently. With a lot of hard work from our coaches and staff, we now have a program to mentally and physically prepare us to go all the way,” Risk said.
Only three regular conference games remain until the Tigers travel to Seguin, Texas for the SCAC championship tournament Nov. 8-10. All three games are on the road against conference foes. The team has Texas Lutheran University today, Schreiner University on Sunday and Southwestern University on Friday, Nov. 1. The Tigers can clinch a playoff spot with a conference tournament victory.
“We want to win a national championship. Period,” Risk said.
The season ends with the Division III National Championship game on Saturday, Dec. 7, at 1:30 p.m. at Blossom Stadium in San Antonio.
John Mendiola is the Web Master and an Arts & Entertainment Reporter for the Trinitonian. He is a senior computer science and communication major from Houston, Texas (though originally Manila, Philippines). This is his 4th year working for the newspaper.