Winning mentality needs to be prominent: Plourde

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Winning mentality needs to be prominent: Plourde

PHOTO COURTESY OF ICGAELS.COM

PHOTO COURTESY OF ICGAELS.COM

PHOTO COURTESY OF ICGAELS.COM

PHOTO COURTESY OF ICGAELS.COM

Matthew Chaves, Sports Editor

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The Gaels continue throughout the season with a 1-6-1 record so far, their latest being a loss at Wagner on Sunday. The team has a solid core but they need to get used to winning, according to head coach Todd Plourde.

“It’s a great group of young women that work extremely hard but have unfortunately lost quite a bit in the first three years here,” Plourde said. “We’re just trying to change the culture and mindset.”

Iona’s recent tie against Army on Wednesday shows their competitiveness and proves they can stand up to top teams in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference, Plourde claims. The captains have done a great job keeping the positivity up and reinforcing the goal of doing better each game.

“Each game we’re cleaning it up and getting better,” Plourde said.

This is Plourde’s first season as head coach at Iona. He was the assistant coach for 15 years beforehand, and this season the goal is to motivate and keep the team going, he said. With that goal in mind, he aims to get the team in a winning mentality and keep them there.

The Gaels have shown their strong and weak points throughout the season so far and the best thing they have is their experience, Plourde said. The freshmen are also doing their part.

“The incoming freshmen are doing a good job getting acclimated and figuring out the speed of play,” Plourde said.

Size and speed play a pivotal part in the team’s play and results as well. The Gaels have been the smallest out of the eight teams they’ve played so far, according to Plourde. The hard work ethic of the team makes up for the lack of physicality.

“We are tough,” Plourde said. “Going up to Army proved that those girls were machines.”

The organization, discipline and fitness came into play throughout the match and showed its face most when the Gaels bounced right back after conceding a goal and held down the fort for 30 minutes.

The stats show the Gaels’ fight in front of the goal whenever they get the chance. Sophomore Faith Preziosi has 3 goals and 1 assist while senior Amber Crispin has 2 goals. Defense is the dominant force here as Iona’s average shots per game racks up to eight while our opponents have 14.7 on average. The back line and goalkeeper are working throughout the 90 minutes with Iona having 34 saves total as opposed to our opponents’ 20 saves.

Consistency in the back third of the pitch is key and, most importantly, solid now, according to Plourde . The midfield has done well and the attacking side has taken the chances given, showing that the team as a whole works well as a unit as opposed to any individual really standing out.

“We just need somebody to step up and score some big goals,” Plourde said.