On the field Jasmine Fahrnbauer, a sophomore defensive midfielder for the Troy soccer team, is like a garage door shutting down almost any opponent’s attempt to move the ball up the field.
On paper, Fahrnbauer falls through the cracks with her one goal and four assists this season.
The season is over for Trojan soccer as Fahrnbauer sits in the locker room trying to bounce the spotlight off of her, letting her voice trail off while looking around nervously.
“It’s just a team effort in defending, and it wouldn’t be right for me to take credit for a team,” Fahrnbauer said.
For a casual student, the blonde wearing No. 2 just runs around in the middle of the field all game long, but for people who understand the game of soccer, Fahrnbauer is so much more.
Imagine that an opposing team’s movement towards Troy’s goal is like a house of cards that grows higher the closer the team gets to scoring.
Jasmine Fahrnbauer is like a gust of wind that sends the house of cards crashing down and forcing the other team to start over.
Fahrnbauer plays the role of sweeper in the midfield picking off passes and attempting to set up attacks for her teammates.
Because of this, the sophomore was able to rack up impressive stats that the NCAA doesn’t measure like the metric for ball recovery that is getting the ball after another player gets it away from an opponent, tackles or separating a player from the ball and interceptions that are just like picks in football.
Three other stats overlooked by the NCAA are blocks, which is just stepping in front of another player’s shot, clearances or kicking the ball away from the opponent’s attacking zone, and aerial duels, which are when two players are fighting for a ball in the air.
“Aerial duels, tackles and interceptions. She killed it,” head coach Chris Bentley said of Fahrnbauer. “Ball recoveries. Killed it. Those are things that she will run through in a game and she’ll collect stat upon stat upon stat.”
Bentley was quick to point out that Fahrnbauer is not all there is to the team.
“She wouldn’t be able to play her position as well if she did not have two attacking midfielders that are shaping the ball into her,” Bentley said.
With the 2013 season in the books, the sophomore has time to look back at positive season for the Trojans.
“We were so close to so many great opportunities to finish in conference and it’s exciting to know that we beat the team that eventually did win the conference tournament,” Fahrnbauer said. “We still have a lot to work on in the offense but eventually I think we’ll become a great team next year.”
Looking to the future, Fahrnbauer is focused on her maturation as an offensive threat.
“Individually, I hope that I can improve in my offense. I know that I don’t get a lot of assists up front, and I know that I only got one goal this season compared to last season where I got a few more.”
Another thing that Fahrnbauer hopes to see more of next season are Troy fans that give the team added motivation.
“It’s definitely exciting,” Fahrnbauer said. “People don’t understand that girls soccer can be pretty intense. I know we should probably get more fans outs to come and support us because we play better when we know that people are really involved in the sport and want to be there.”
Next season, Troy fans will have the opportunity to watch a team of Trojans who have all the parts to make some real noise in the Sun Belt and right there in the middle of it all, the blonde wearing No. 2 will be busy bringing down the house of cards.