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September 21, 2023

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Women’s soccer begins MAC play with two losses during weekend road trip

The BG women’s soccer team had a rough start into its Mid-American Conference play this weekend. The Falcons dropped both of their games, losing 5-0 to the Ball State Cardinals on Friday night and 2-0 to the Miami Redhawks on Sunday afternoon.

After Friday’s loss, head coach Lindsay Basalyga said her team was able to show the level it can compete at in some moments, yet it will take time and commitment from her players to be able to compete the full 90 minutes. She said she is pleased with where her team is at right now.

BG went into this weekend with a record of 1-8-0, but Basalyga said going into MAC play meant a clean slate for her team and they would look at is as being undefeated.

On Friday night, the Falcons lost goalkeeper Lauren Cadel in the 12th minute in the first half to an injury and junior Alexis Smith played between the posts for the rest of the game.

In the 20th minute, Ball State player Madison Oyer scored a goal off a cross in front of the box making it 1-0 for the Cardinals.

The Falcons had five shots in the first half but were not able to score. Ball State took a 1-0 lead into halftime.

BG came out strong to start the second half, making four shots in the first 15 minutes, yet none of those shots found the back of the net.

In the 64th minute a Falcon defender deflected a ball into their own goal, giving Ball State a 2-0 lead.

A penalty was awarded to Ball State in the 69th minute and Cardinals player Orla Travers-Gillespie took the opportunity to make it 3-0.

The young Falcons were not able to recover from this deficit with only 20 minutes left in the game, and Ball State extended its lead to 5-0 with two more goals in the 70th minute and the 86th minute.

“A 5-0 loss is tough to swallow in an opening MAC game, but the reality is we have nine players returning from last year. Only nine of our 22 players have experienced MAC play so this was a huge learning moment for our young team,” Basalyga said.

On a sunny Sunday afternoon in Oxford, Ohio, the Miami Redhawks handed the Falcons their next loss.

Cadel was back in goal for the Falcons, yet her nine saves were not enough to keep the Falcons from losing 2-0.

Miami player Maggie Scott scored the 1-0 lead for the Redhawks in the 14th minute as her header off a corner went past Cadel.

Ten minutes later, Miami’s Haley Walter took the ball from the middle, went wide and took a shot that went by the far post into the back of the net making it 2-0 for the Redhawks.

The Redhawks outshot the Falcons 25-2 and also shut BG out on corner kicks 7-0.

The Falcons fell to 1-8-0 overall and 0-2-0 in the MAC while the Redhawks improved to 7-2-0 overall and 1-1-0 in conference play.

BG will continue its conference play with a pair of road matches next weekend. The Falcons will play against Buffalo on Friday, Oct. 3, and will take on Akron on Sunday, Oct. 5.

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