Ball State Field Hockey (1-8, 1-1 MAC) earned their first win of the 2018 season in a 1-0 overtime victory over MAC rival Appalachian State (4-7, 0-3 MAC). This is the first time the Cardinals have defeated the Mountaineers since 2016.

For the second time in two games, the field hockey pushed a team to the brink into overtime. Except in today’s game, they were able to execute in the clutch. The Cardinals had their best offensive showing in the 4-5 overtime loss on Monday to UC-Davis, and they carried that momentum into Fridays victory.

The game was a defensive battle, resulting in a 0-0 score at the end of regulation. The Cardinals had high offensive expectations after scoring four goals in their loss to UC-Davis (after scoring only three combined goals in the seven games prior to that matchup), but they could not execute until it mattered the most. 

“It was the learning from Monday’s game that made the difference for us today,” Head coach Stephanie Bernthal said. “We had a 2-0 lead Monday against UC-Davis, but we let it get away. We really battled throughout today’s game. It’s about the details and remaining consistent no matter what the score is.”

The seven shots attempted by the Cardinals in regulation could not find the back of the goal, but the Cardinal defense held their own to prevent the Mountaineers from converting on their six shots. Sophomore goalkeeper Grace Chavez ended the game with five saves to seal the shutout. 

“It was a great opportunity,” said Chavez. “We are more upbeat now. We figured out Monday that we could score and score a lot, and it helped our confidence today.”

The Cardinals had three more shot attempts in overtime, with one connecting to secure the win. Redshirt junior forward Michelle Shampton had four shot attempts, while sophomore forward Abby Ferenczy, junior midfielder Arantxa Rosainz Caloca, and senior forward Darbi Gullett had one each. Redshirt sophomore midfielder Rachel Pereira had three shot attempts, with one connecting for the win. 

“It was a great execution of the little things,” said Bernthal. “Everybody played their role and stayed focused. Controlling the game and getting the shutout was the icing on the cake. We’re excited, and obviously we got a big challenge ahead of us Sunday.” 

After earning their first win of the season, the Cardinals will face No. 1 North Carolina on Sunday, Sept. 30 at 1 p.m.

Contact Gavin Crafton with comments at or on Twitter @GavinCrafton.