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West High undefeated, not yet perfect

Women of Troy top J-Hawks
West High’s Emma Cooper launches a shot at the J-Hawk goal on April 23. The Women of Troy took the match 4-0 to remain undefeated and moved to number one in Class 3A. (photo by Chris Umscheid)

IOWA CITY– The West High Women of Troy had little trouble with the visiting J-Hawks of Cedar Rapids Jefferson on Thursday, April 23, beating the Hawks 4-0. The victory improved West’s record to 6-0 as the team moved to No. 1 in Class 3A according to the Iowa Girls High School Athletic Union in its weekly rankings issued Friday, April 24. West took over the top spot after Linn-Mar dropped from No. 1 to No. 7 in the wake of a 2-1 upset loss to the Cedar Rapids Kennedy Cougars.
Regan Steigleder struck twice for West, first at about eight minutes into the first half and again about 30 minutes in. Annie Peterson scored with 14:42 left in the second half. Emma Cooper struck with three minutes of play remaining.
It was a solid win for West, but coach David Rosenthal wasn’t satisfied. Neither was his team.
“We have to demand more (of ourselves),” Rosenthal said. “Things are good, but we try to be demanding about this because, I think, I honestly believe, there’s another level for this team to go to.”
The team lost some significant talent to graduation.
“We’ve got some new players that we’ve got to figure out their roles, and we’re playing a slightly different system, and it’s taking them some time to get comfortable with it. But it’s coming little by little by little. It’s coming together.” Rosenthal added.
Rosenthal was able to go deep into his bench against Jefferson, giving some other players minutes on the field in different positions, which, he said, will make them a stronger team overall.
“I liked that some of our non-starters were able to play some pretty solid minutes, we got to see them in some roles, we got them to play with some of our starters, which we don’t always get to do.” Getting the non-starters and starters comfortable with each other builds trust, Rosenthal said, “and we can rely on them more, and I like that opportunity.”
“I liked seeing Annie Peterson (junior, mid-fielder) get her goal. She’s been working pretty hard and she’s been a little frustrated. It was a terrific run, a really good ball (assist) by Abby Zimmerman, who’s not a starter for us. She (Peterson) made a great timed run and she slotted that ball home down low. It was a great confidence booster for both of them.” Rosenthal said.
Overall Rosenthal added, “It’s been a great start to the season, it’s come together a little more quickly than I thought it would, but that’s usually the case. It’s a good group of kids, they work well together, they like each other and there’s some pretty good team chemistry, which I think is a lot of the pieces of the puzzle when you’re trying to develop a good team.”
The team travels to Cedar Rapids Xavier (fourth in Class 2A) on Thursday, April 30, with the varsity kicking off at 4:15 p.m. The girls host Cedar Falls on Monday, May 4, with junior varsity taking the field at 5 p.m. and varsity following around 7 p.m.