After splitting its previous two games on the road, Ball State Field Hockey (1-10, 1-1 MAC) opened its two-game home stint with a 5-1 loss to No. 11 Louisville (9-3, 2-2 ACC).
“I want to see our ability to play a little bit better help defense, be proactive defensively, and winning the ball should be our focus from here on out,” said Ball State head coach Stephanie Bernthal.
Louisville’s Mercedes Pastor scored the first goal at the 5:39 mark in the first half. 12 minutes went by before Taylor Stone scored Louisville’s second goal to put them up 2-0.
The first half concluded with Louisville attempting seven total shots, four of them on goal, and two corners. Ball State had one shot attempt from senior midfielder Anya Eicher and a corner. Sophomore goalkeeper Grace Chavez had two saves along with the pair of allowed goals.
Bethany Russ and Stone opened the scoring in the second half, scoring one goal each and stretching Louisville’s lead to 4-0.
Ball State was able to get on the board with a goal up the middle from redshirt junior Michelle Shampton, reducing the deficit to three.
“Honestly, it felt good,” Shampton said. “When you score, it’s such a thrilling feeling, but I couldn’t have done it without my whole team being together and being unified.”
The final goal of the match was scored by Louisville at the 62:58 mark, giving them the 5-1 victory.
Coming off a 9-0 loss to the No. 1 team in the nation, Shampton talked about what it was like playing against a top team in the country for a second straight game.
“Playing a really good team like Louisville, you really can see what you can work on, especially going into MAC play on Friday,” Shampton said.
Ball State will try to rebound at home against Ohio Friday, Oct. 5 at 5 p.m.