Despite good effort and competitive spirit, IU could not obtain positive results against ranked opponents this weekend.
IU was defeated by No. 7 Maryland in its first conference game Saturday and by No. 12 Delaware the day after in a close matchup.
Against the Terrapins, the Hoosiers saw their three-game win streak come to an end after a 4-1 loss. However, the score did not reflect the close battle the match really was.
“We had a lot of fight today,” IU Coach Amanda Janney said in a release by IU Athletics. “The team did a good job of stepping up and playing a fast-paced game. Our defense really stepped up today, and they were able to limit a lot of Maryland’s opportunities.”
The Hoosiers went down early in the first half, and from the ninth minute the team searched for the equalizing goal.
An early score from the Terrapins in the second half made the Hoosiers press forward on offense. Senior defender Kate Barber scored her 10th goal of the season, and IU was back on track 10 minutes into the second half. Barber attempted to tie the game in different occasions.
IU’s determination to find the game-tying goal left a mass of open space on its backline, allowing Maryland to generate goal-scoring opportunities easily.
As the game came to an end the Terrapins found the back of the Hoosier goal two times off counterattacks and quick plays.
On the other side, junior Taylor Pearson was active in the Hoosier offensive line as she led the team in scoring opportunities with four shots on goal.
“We had some great challenges early in the season with our nonconference schedule,” Janney said. “But we can really see where we are at after playing the returning Big Ten champions. It is a good sign in my opinion.”
In contrast to its consistent performance against Maryland, IU two different teams in each half against No. 12 Delaware.
At the half the Hoosiers were down 4-0 and a comeback did not really seem to be on the way against the Blue Hens.
In the first minute of the second half senior midfielder Morgan Dye scored and changed the momentum for the Hoosiers.
Although the Blue Hens netted their fifth goal, IU came close to sending the game to overtime by scoring the next three goals but ultimately fell short, 5-4.
Barber scored twice in the comeback effort and extended her scoring streak to seven games. The senior captain now has 12 goals this season.
“The resilience on our team really showed through considering the halftime score,” Janney said. “The fight to come back and score four goals in the second half was amazing for us.”
The Hoosiers will look to get back in the win column against Rutgers next weekend at home in their second conference game of the season.
Following the game against Rutgers, IU will face Central Michigan on the road. The games will take place at 3:30 p.m. Friday in Bloomington and at noon Sunday in Mt. Pleasant, Michigan.