By Caleb Odom
After the first weekend of regular season play, the Troy soccer team (1-1) is preparing a set of home matches against Louisiana Tech and Jackson State.
The first home stand, called the Trojan Classic, is what head coach Chris Bentley is preparing his team for after two games that show where Troy needs to improve.
Last Friday, on Aug. 23, the Trojans traveled to Montgomery where they opened the regular season against Alabama State.
Troy scored three goals in the 3-0 win, a result that Bentley was pleased with.
“We had a good team performance,” Bentley said. “I think we had people come off the bench that were very strong.”
In the 47th minute freshman midfielder Necee Jennings put the Trojans up 1-0 with a goal assisted by Abby Reynolds.
Troy tallied a second goal in the 54th minute when Kirsten Rendall found the net assisted by Cecilia Thorngren.
The Trojans would put the score out of reach late in the 78th minute when Annabell Simpson got a goal in a penalty kick.
“We were quite effective Friday in controlling and dictating play against our opponent in Alabama State,” Bentley said. “However, there were things we needed to address.”
Bentley said that his team was getting countered in space and that Troy was over-committing on the attack.
“Going into Sunday, Stetson, in my opinion, had a couple of players that caused us some problems,” Bentley said. “A midfielder that was very strong and a center back that really held her own that were new types of players that we had to deal with.”
Bentley said he thinks that part of the reason for the 2-1 loss on Sunday to Stetson can be credited to a quick turnaround from the Friday match to Sunday.
“I think we really need to address when to go forward and when not to and when numbers forward in the attack and when not to,” Bentley said. “If we can fix that I think you’ll find that we’ll be much more organized defensively.”
The upcoming Friday match against Louisiana Tech offers a challenge from a team that Bentley feels will try to attack Troy’s current weaknesses.
“Every time we play them, he’s got them organized defensively,” Bentley said. “They are very savvy in the attack, they look to break down our weaknesses so it wouldn’t surprise me if he does try to counter against us as an example.”
As for the Jackson State match on Sunday, according to Bentley, the Trojans will be gearing up to face more athleticism like Louisiana Tech brings to the table.
For more Troy soccer coverage all season long check out Troy Sports on Twitter and go to tropnews.com for postgame coverage. For an extensive story about #Project19 look for a feature in Saturday’s game day publication the Cardinal Rule being handed out on campus before the Troy UAB football game.