Mattingly sets minutes record, Roberts ties wins mark
One game, two records.
When Ball State soccer beat Northern Illinois 2-0 Sunday, senior defender Leah Mattingly broke the school record for minutes played and head coach Craig Roberts tied the Cardinals’ record with his 70th win with the program.
“It’s a delight to have won it with these girls,” Roberts said. “It is the most gratifying thing to be around these individuals and to be apart of their success.”
Mattingly said health had a lot to do with her record-setting 7,112 career minutes played.
“It’s an honor to even be on the field that long,” Mattingly said. “I mean, it’s great, Chay [McNitt] could have that but she had an injury her freshman year.”
The Cardinals, now 10-2-2 with a 5-0-1 Mid-American Conference record, won both of their games over Fall Break. They now lead the MAC West and are ranked 43rd in the NCAA RPI, the highest ranking in program history.
On Thursday, Ball State won 2-0 against against Western Michigan, but Roberts was not satisfied with how the team executed the game plan.
“There should have been areas that we could have done better, and I felt we corrected a lot of those in the second half,” Roberts said. “I thought that we threatened the goal on several occasions where we could have gotten more goals as well.”
On Sunday at Northern Illinois, the Cardinals faced a different challenge. Fans were sitting behind the Ball State goal for a majority of the game. They heckled junior goalkeeper Alyssa Heintschel throughout the game and at one point even threw water on her during a free kick.
“We’re open to heckling and we’re open to crowds shouting and that doesn’t bother us,” Roberts said. “But sometimes, if it inflicts on safety issues in regards to players on the field, then I get very concerned.”
Ball State won’t have to worry about that in their next game, as the bleachers at Briner Sports Complex are only on one sideline. Roberts will go for his 71st win in that game Oct. 14 against Bowling Green.