After a disappointing loss to No. 6 Loyola, No. 10 Penn State is looking forward to its next game against Duquesne in Pittsburgh on Wednesday.
“It definitely puts a little chip on our shoulder,” senior Katie Guy said. “We want to get back out there. It leaves a bad taste in your mouth when you come off a loss like that. We’re definitely eager to…give it to Duquesne.”
Even though the 13-11 defeat was a tough one for Penn State, a game in which the Nittany Lions had a one-goal lead at the beginning of the second half, coach Missy Doherty believes the team can improve off of the game.
“We want to grow from our Loyola loss, it was a disappointing defeat,” Doherty said. “The game was really tight and we just want to improve on the things that we saw in that game.”
Both Doherty and Guy said the team will focus on “finishing their shots” in practice.
In the game against Loyola, the Nittany Lions recorded 12 shots in a tight second half, but only scored on four. In the first half, Penn State scored seven goals on 17 shots. Meanwhile, Loyola shot 32 total shots on the Penn State net.
The team will look to rely on midfielder Jenna Mosketti to jumpstart the offense as she leads the team in scoring with five goals.
“When [Loyola] stalled for the last 20 minutes of the game, we weren’t really expecting it, so we’re going to practice our push-out defense more and getting everyone on the same page,” Guy said.
Duquesne should give the Lions’ defense a challenge after scoring 20 goals in its first game of the season against Saint Francis. The Dukes also won their second game against Marquette, 11-7, and Doherty called the Dukes a “fast, athletic team.”
Even though the game against Duquesne is days before Penn State plays another ranked team in No. 8 Virginia on Sunday, the team is not overlooking the game against its same-state opponent.
“Duquesne is a pretty big game,” Guy said. “We’re not going to take them lightly. We have our game on Wednesday to get ready for and then a huge game against UVA on the weekend.”
As a third-year head coach, Doherty knows that a team cannot afford to simply glance over an opponent and look more into the future of a schedule.
“We know the schedule we play and we can’t overlook anybody,” Doherty said.