Bulldogs halt Ball State's momentum with 4-0 victory

Ball State soccer huddles together before the Mid-American Conference (MAC) Championship game against Buffalo. The Cardinals fell 2-0 in their third MAC championship appearance. Joe Gilbert/Ball State Athletics photo courtesy
Ball State soccer huddles together before the Mid-American Conference (MAC) Championship game against Buffalo. The Cardinals fell 2-0 in their third MAC championship appearance. Joe Gilbert/Ball State Athletics photo courtesy

Even with momentum on the Cardinals side following a 3-0 victory over Austin Peay just four days prior, Butler (4-4-1) dominated Ball State in the Cardinals’ last game before Mid-American Conference (MAC) play begins.  

The Cardinals walked away with their fifth loss in seven games, a 4-0 shutout to the Bulldogs, at the end of the 90-minute period.  

“We definitely have to reiterate and really focus on the basics,” Ball State head coach Josh Rife said, “I think that is our defensive toughness in the box and connecting passes.”

Norah Jacomen, freshman forward, was first on the scoreboard for the Bulldogs in the first five minutes. She was assisted by redshirt senior midfielder, Alana Wood and sophomore midfielder, Talia Sommer.

Junior forward Alexei Whittaker finished off the first half with Butler’s second goal in the 44th minute. Sophomore forward, Leila Lister and sophomore midfielder, Emily O’Malley, took part in the assist.  

“I don’t think we competed together as well as we could have or needed to,” Rife said.

The second half brought in two more points for the Bulldogs within two minutes. Jacomen was assisted by Sommer in the 60th minute for her second goal, and Whittaker scored the fourth and final goal with an assist by graduate defender Aliya Diagne in the 62nd minute.

“We only have one direction to go. We have to get better and we have to get prepared for [conference] play,” Rife said.

The Cardinals host Miami (OH) to kick off the MAC season Thursday, Sept. 21 at 4 pm. 

Contact Meghan Sawitzke with comments at meghan.sawitzke@bsu.edu or on X @MSawitzke.

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