The IU women’s soccer team scored one time this weekend in two matches as part of the Hoosier Challenge Cup.
A 3-0 defeat to Louisiana State on Friday was followed by a 2-1 loss to Southern Methodist on Monday afternoon. The Hoosiers were the only team participating in the Hoosier Challenge Cup not to win a match in the tournament.
Monday’s defeat against SMU was the third loss of the season for IU, and the team’s record fell to 2-3-1.
“The way we are losing — I think it’s a little bit of a lack of effort,” IU Coach Amy Berbary said. “We’ve got to work better as a team on finishing games.”
IU took the lead against SMU on an 11th-minute goal from senior midfielder Veronica Ellis. After receiving a pass from sophomore forward Abby Allen, Ellis crossed the ball into the Mustang penalty box.
Sophomore goalkeeper Catie Brown attempted to catch Ellis’ cross but instead deflected the ball into her own goal to give the Hoosiers an early lead.
“I thought for a half-second to myself if I should shoot the ball or cross it,” Ellis said. “I went with the cross, and it ended up going in. When you put the ball in a dangerous area, usually some good things will happen.”
SMU responded by scoring an equalizing goal prior to halftime courtesy of junior midfielder Claire Oates. Oates headed a free kick from sophomore defender Haley Thompson into the net in the 39th minute with the ball bouncing past freshman goalkeeper Sarah L’Hommedieu.
L’Hommedieu received the start in net for the fourth consecutive match for IU, and made several big saves in the second half to keep the match tied. Her biggest save came in the 72nd minute when she stopped a shot from SMU sophomore forward Vanessa Valadez on a breakaway.
However, the Mustangs would score the game’s deciding goal just five minutes later, when sophomore midfielder Blair Thorpe hit a long-range curling shot that found the top-left corner of the net.
“SMU put up a good fight, and they never quit. That’s how they got a result,” Ellis said. “Every goal is a sequence of events that results in it. So we try and look at the things that we could have done to prevent those chances, and we try to focus on fixing those things.”
Berbary opted to play several of the team’s younger players in the match against SMU. Eight freshmen made an appearance in the game, including freshman midfielder Julia De Angelis, who made her first collegiate appearance.
“I think we’ve got a lot of talent. We just have to put it all together,” Berbary said.
IU’s opening loss in the Hoosier Challenge Cup to LSU was a more straightforward result, with all three LSU goals coming in the game’s first 50 minutes. A brace from junior forward Jorian Baucom and another goal from freshman midfielder Caitlin Cantrill led the Tigers in their victory.
The loss to LSU snapped a two-game winning streak for IU, and IU has now lost two matches in a row.
“The small details are what is going to push us towards getting wins,” Berbary said. “We just need to find that right mix offensively to really be dangerous in front of goal. We will get there. We just have to sort out a few things and keep learning.”
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