AMES, Iowa – Junior forward Frances Silva
scored a pair of second-half goals to lead No. 16 West Virginia past Iowa State, 3-2, Sunday afternoon at Cyclone Sports Complex. The Mountaineers, who extend their winning streak to seven matches, move to 5-0-0 in Big 12 Conference play.
“This was a big weekend for us, to complete a three game road swing in conference play,” said coach Nikki Izzo-Brown. “To get three winning results, it says a lot about the character of this team.”
After Iowa State scored a goal in the first 73 seconds of the match, WVU answered with a score from forward Kelsie Maloney
in the 28th minute. Maloney finished a shot from the left side of the box on a cross from forward Kate Schwindel
, placing the ball inside the right post to make it 1-1.
West Virginia increased its lead with goals from Silva in the 57th and 70th minutes, with Schwindel picking up assists on both scores. The three-assist day is the second of Schwindel’s career, matching her three-helper day against High Point earlier this season.
WVU maintained possession following its fourth corner kick of the match, as Schwindel took the ball wide and to the left touch line. The sophomore slotted a ball on the ground where Silva stepped to it and sent the ball into the left side netting to take a 2-1 lead.
Silva’s two goals give her 10 on the season to lead the Mountaineers.
The Cyclones rallied to make it a 3-2 match in the 85th minute on a goal from leading scorer Jennifer Dominguez. Iowa State pushed the ball up field in transition following a Mountaineer corner kick, finishing with forward Dominguez taking a shot from 15 yards out for a score.
WVU goalkeeper Sara Keane
came up with a big save in the 80th minute, making a full extension save on a long blast from Kaeli Flaska. Keane finished with three saves.
The Mountaineers pressured in their offensive final third for a good portion of the match, forcing ISU goalkeeper Maddie Jobe to make nine saves.
In the 51st minute, Maloney nearly added a second goal on a shot at the near post. Maloney cut a defender inside the box, forcing a diving stop from Jobe.
Less than four minutes later, defender Bry McCarthy
pushed forward and found midfielder Kara Blosser
wide open in the middle of the box. Blosser’s header was snagged out of the air by a diving Jobe.
ISU’s first goal came as the Mountaineer back line tried to lure the Cyclones offsides, leading to a header in the box from Dominguez. A second service into the box landed at the head of Dominguez at the six-yard box.
Iowa State had a scoring chance in the 27th minute as Erin Green sent a ball wide of the left post from the top of the box.
WVU defender Jess Crowder
nearly lit the scoreboard at the 31:24 mark on a blast from 22 yards out. ISU midfielder Hayley Womack stood her ground at the post following a free kick for WVU on the left flank, making a team save to keep it a 1-1 match.
The Mountaineers finished with a 21-13 shot advantage, including 13 shots on-goal – tying a season high.
WVU improves to 9-3-3 overall, while Iowa State dips to 9-7-0.
“We’ve been to Texas, to Kansas and now Iowa; I know we are looking forward to returning home for Friday’s battle with Baylor,” said Izzo-Brown. “It might be our toughest test yet, so I’m hoping our fans come out and help us maintain our position atop the Big 12 standings.”
West Virginia, with three regular-season matches remaining, plays host to Baylor on Friday, Oct. 12, at Dick Dlesk Soccer Stadium.