In a rematch of last season’s Mid-American Conference championship game, Bowling Green State (4-5-3, 3-1-1 MAC) took down Ball State (4-6-1, 2-2-1 MAC) 2-0.
“It was the same two schools playing, but it wasn’t the same two teams playing,” head coach Josh Rife said. “It’s not the same matchup. It’s not a playoff game, it’s just a regular season game. This is a whole new team, a whole new season, a whole new situation.”
The Falcons started off the scoring in the 14th minute with a header goal from junior defender Audrey Shea off a corner kick. The second goal was also a header, coming from redshirt senior forward Madi Wolfbauer in the 58th minute.
The Cardinals outshot Bowling Green State 13-8 but couldn’t find the back of the net. Redshirt junior goalkeeper Lili Berg finished with five saves.
“We were just having trouble capitalizing, that’s something we definitely need to work out in practice,” graduate student midfielder Melissa Diceman said. “We have to get into the box more, get more crosses, and just be gritty like Josh [Rife] told us.”
The rematch was filled with emotion, and it showed, with both teams combining for 17 fouls, nine on Ball State and eight on Bowling Green State.
“This is a game we’ve been looking forward to for about a week now,” Diceman said. “It had a lot of hype around it. We were excited to play.”
Rife said he thought, despite the loss, the Cardinals fought hard.
“We played really well, one of our better performances,” Rife said. “[Bowling Green] made great plays. When you look at it statistically, we positioned ourselves well when it mattered most.”
Ball State will be on the road Sunday Oct. 10 to take on Toledo at 1 p.m.
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