The friendly confines of McAlister Field proved to be the perfect ingredient for victory for the USC women’s soccer team as it came away with a weekend sweep against then-No. 25 Auburn and Northern Arizona University in the Trojan Invitational.
Looking to match their success last weekend, the Women of Troy (4-1-2) will face the Oklahoma Sooners (3-2-1) at 3 p.m. at McAlister Field — and once again, protecting home field will be of the utmost importance for the team.
“We can use our home field to our advantage,” senior forward Megan Ohai said. “We don’t want to lose at home and the more wins we get at home, the tougher it gets for other teams to come in and play.”
The team now finds itself on a six-game unbeaten streak and on the receiving end of some recognition because of its recent play. In the National Soccer Coaches Association of America and Soccer America polls, the Women of Troy are ranked No. 23.
Despite what the rankings say, senior defender Karter Haug said the Women of Troy just need to go out and play.
“We don’t really look at the rankings,” Haug said. “It’s one of those things where we just want to come out, play our game and whoever we’re playing … we just want to do our best.”
The defense has been shutting down opponents and the offense has been creating plenty of scoring opportunities — the only problem is that the team is not finishing those opportunities.
Though the Women of Troy did score multiple goals for the first time against Northern Arizona, Ohai believes that their offense can still do better.
“We can’t take it to heart too much,” Ohai said. “It motivates us a little bit because we’ve been working on it, but we’ve got to keep going and there’s still room for improvement.”
With some momentum going into the match against the Sooners, the Women of Troy are playing with confidence, but USC coach Ali Khosroshahin said the team shouldn’t worry about winning.
“When you just focus on results, you’re going to be an inconsistent team,” Khosroshahin said. “But when you focus on how you play, the results will take of itself if you do the little things correctly.”
If the Women of Troy do all the little things correctly and control what they can control — most notably, finishing their scoring opportunities and taking care of the ball — they will be in a good position to duplicate their recent success.