Freshman defender Mckenzie Grossman’s apparent knee injury against Boise State Sept. 20 looked extremely painful.
She was writhing around in pain late on the ground, which was audible in the press box, and needed assistance to get off the field. Still, coach Boyd said it wasn’t as bad as it could have been.
“They told me it’s not ACL, so that’s good news,” he said.
He also said freshman defender Larisa Staub suffered an ankle injury in practice leading up to the Boise State game and held her out of the game.
“She turned her ankle in practice,” Boyd said. “She could’ve gone, but she wasn’t 100 percent, and the worry always with an ankle like that is the next time you hurt it, you hurt it really bad. So if we could sit her out, the next game is nine days later, we gain a lot of ground.”
ASU’s next game against USC is Sept. 29, and it comes nine days after its loss to Boise State.
Usually two games are played in a weekend, but ASU will navigate through two consecutive weeks with one game each.
That’s a significant amount of downtime, and the Sun Devils are hoping they can get at least Staub back for the start of conference play.
Staub started the season starting at right back and Grossman eventually replaced her. ASU’s depth would certainly be tested if one of them remains out.
Boyd has said that depth was indeed a concern, specifically on defense. Senior defenders Jasmine Roth and Kaitlyn Pavlovich, and sophomore defender McKenzie Berryhill have played nearly every minute in ASU’s first eight games.
In addition, freshman forward Katie Mohr suffered a concussion and was held out against Boise State, Boyd said.
This is in addition to much more serious injuries: Senior forward Jessica Domenichelli and walk-on forward Andrea Boyd are out for the season with ACL tears.
Goal kick switch
In the second half, ASU swapped out their goal kicking. Redshirt sophomore goalie Chandler Morris had taking all the opportunities in 2013, but the team had Berryhill take the last two.
“Just (McKenzie) was hitting them a little further today,” Morris said. “It wasn’t my kicking day, I guess.”
A point of emphasis in this year was the power on Morris’s goal kicks, but they weren’t going far enough against Boise State.
“We didn’t think our keeper was hitting a long enough ball,” Boyd said. “It was keeping us under pressure.”
ASU splitting practice outdoors/indoors
Until recently, the ASU practiced primarily outside. But in 2012, ASU started to utilize the Verde Dickey Dome, which is located right by Sun Devil Soccer Stadium.
“We started using it last year just to try and cut down what I would say is an accumulation of heat where your body just gets depleted,” Boyd said. “We obviously play in the heat. We can’t avoid it. We need to train in it, but we need to pick moments so we’re not always in it. I think it’s helped with our energy to a certain degree.”
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