SOCCER: Ball State falls in exhibition opener
Ball State soccer opened its 2013 season with a loss in an exhibition match against Butler 2-3.
After seeing double-digit roster spots overturned in the offseason, coach Craig Roberts knew there would be some adjustments to make.
One of those questions marks comes in the last line of defense for the Cardinals. After losing a two-year letterwinner Aubrey Buehler to graduation, Ball State will have a new goalkeeper.
Senior Layne Schramm started inbetween the pipes for the Cardinals, and was pelted with shots in the first half.
Butler shot early and often, until sophomore midfielder Paige Johnson netted a shot from the right side of the field from a pass from junior forward Elise Kotsakis at the 30:19 mark. Despite eight first half shots, this was the only goal Butler could muster in the first half.
Schramm registered three saves in her 45 minutes of work, and at halftime Roberts subbed in freshman Brooke Dennis.
Dennis was welcomed to her first collegiate action with a barrage of shots, as the second half opened as a mirror image to the first. Just three minutes into the half freshman midfielder McKenzie Muchow slotted one home off a deflection to put Butler up 2-0.
And before the crowd could stop talking about Muchow’s goal, Kotsakis scored under two minutes later in the 50th minute from 20 yards out.
After the onslaught of the first five minutes, Brooke registered two saves, and kept Butler off the board for the rest of the game.
For the first 80 minutes, Butler seemed to control the game. But in the 84th minute sophomore midfielder Erin Greeley got Ball State on the board in her second action in her career.
Showing resolve in their first completion of the year, another young Cardinal broke through. Freshman forward Kelsey Wendlandt scored three minutes later.
Even though the Cardinals could not find the equalizer, the two goals are encouraging. In the early days of summer practice Roberts stressed that he would need new players to step up, and create offensively.
The team now has one week for final tune-ups before their season opener at home against Northern Iowa.