Allen keeps perspective after position change

Sports Reporter

It’s no secret how young the Texas State soccer team is this season. There’s 14 underclassmen compared to nine upperclassmen.

A few of the veteran players have felt the effect of a young team early.

After two seasons as a defender, Taylor Allen, junior midfielder, has had to make significant changes to her game.

“When Taylor first came to us she actually played the outside defender position,” said Coach Kat Conner. “But due to the youth situation we’re in right now we’ve decided to put her in a wing-back position to where she can get into the attack.”

Conner understood what she was asking of Allen, a player who has always worked on the defensive side of the ball. But at the same time, she had no doubt Allen was up for the challenge.

“The position change is due to her unbelievable work ethic,” Conner said. “She has the determination and drive to push herself. So that’s one of the main reasons we put her there. Her ability to push through adversity and the grit says a lot about her game.”

While Allen admits it’s been tough, she said the move has been a good test for her.

Her new position has already played a role in the team’s system. Allen already had an assist that aided the team in its 2-0 victory over Houston in the season opener.

“I feel like everything is coming along well,” Allen said. “I think in the beginning we were trying to figure out where everyone was going to fit. There has been a lot of moving of players—which is why I’m at outside-mid now—but I think we’re all starting to get a feel for it now.”

Allen is focusing on elevating her forward game and becoming an attacking player by putting herself in the position to have scoring opportunities.

Texas State has only been a part of Allen’s life for two years now, but the Austin native always knew that she wanted to compete at a higher level.

While traveling with her club team in high school, she looked up to all the college girls succeeding at the next level. Allen fell in love with the idea of playing in college.

“When deciding where I would play, I always wanted to go to Texas State,” Allen said. “Both my parents went to Texas State and I love the area, so that played a huge role in my decision to play here.”

It’s still early to be making season predictions, but if the first two regular season games are any indication of how all the position changes are working out, it’s looking positive.

The early-season moves have been a challenge, but Allen and Conner understand the process.

“Well, everyone is just trying to get used to each other, really,” Conner said. “There’s a lot of new faces and they just have to get the feel of everything. Obviously it’s just the sync that we need to get into, but everyone has done an excellent job at communicating and correcting their mistakes.”

Follow Donavan Jackson on Twitter at @djack_02.