| March 22, 2018

Column: Confidence Versus Pressure

October 3, 2016

Idaho’s women’s soccer team won both home games this weekend. On Friday, the Vandals won 2-0 against Northern Colorado withthen scored two goals late in the second-half.

Sunday’s 5-1 win against North Dakota resulted in four points added during the second half.

In both of these games, the teams seemed evenly matched during the first half. On Friday, the score was 0-0 at halftime and on Sunday, Idaho was up by one at halftime.

The Vandals are a second half team.

There are drawbacks to scoring a game’s worth of points during the second half. An equal game at halftime can mean more pressure for players.

Establishing a lead early on can create a confident, relaxed pace of play and eliminates sloppy mistakes. Pressure can also serve as a motivator.

Idaho head coach Derek Pittman said the team needs to be more aggressive.

“We want to make sure that we start the game right,” Pittman said. “I think we’ve been a little slow on some of the first halves, kind of being patient, feeling out how the game’s going to go.”

Idaho moved to No. 2 in the Big Sky Conference standings list.

Idaho’s second half comebacks work. However, as the playoffs draw nearer, there is always room for improvement, especially when it comes to securing a lead early on.

“It is something that we concentrate on,” Pitman said. “We want to make sure that we don’t give up goals in the first half, but also we need to be more dangerous.”

Ella Fredericks can be reached at arg-sports@uidaho.eduor on Twitter @ellabfred

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