Dinges scores for RedHawks, but comeback falls short
OXFORD, Ohio – A slow start proved to be too much to overcome for the Miami University women’s soccer team as Ball State scored two goals in the first 22 minutes and the RedHawks were unable to complete a comeback, falling, 2-1, Friday afternoon at a cool and windy Miami Soccer Field. Miami (6-4-0, 1-2-0 Mid-American Conference) suffered its first home loss of the season in defeat, falling to 4-1 in Oxford on the year.
The Cardinals (7-4-1, 2-1-0 MAC) took advantage of the RedHawks’ sluggish start, scoring less than 11 minutes into the contest. Paige Stroinski lifted a free kick into the box and Brigit Reder soared above Miami’s defense to bury the ball with her head for her team-leading sixth goal of the year, giving BSU a 1-0 lead.
Just over 10 minutes later, in the 22nd minute, the Cardinals doubled their advantage when Jasmine Moses found the back of the net for the fifth time this year. Miami turned the ball over in its defensive end to Moses, who took a dribble and ripped a shot from 25 yards on the right side that just beat the outstretched arms of redshirt freshman goalkeeper Allison Norenberg (Palatine, Ill.). Norenberg got a finger on it, but it hit the far post and bounced in.
The RedHawks would wake up after falling behind by two, firing their first shot of the match in the 23rd minute off the foot of freshman Hailey Pleshakov (Brighton, Mich.). Miami nearly got one back in the 31st minute, as senior Sarah Dessfelt (Vellinge, Sweden) put her boot on the end of a corner kick but Ball State defender Amanda Dreyfus was in the right place to clear it off the line and keep it out of the net.
The game would head to halftime with the Cardinals leading, 2-0. BSU held a slight, 7-6 edge in shots, though Miami outshot Ball State, 6-3 over the final 22 minutes of the period. The ‘Hawks also had a 2-1 advantage in corner kicks but BSU keeper Aubrey Buehler had three saves to keep Miami off the scoreboard.
Both sides would have chances in the second half, with the RedHawks generating most of the offense, but it was not enough to overcome the early deficit. Freshman Kelsey Dinges (Smithton, Ill.) would cut the Ball State advantage in half in the 78th minute with some fancy dribbling, avoiding multiple BSU defenders before blasting a shot from the top of the box that beat Buehler to her right. It was Dinges’ second goal of the season.
Miami earned seven corner kicks over the final 45 minutes but was unable to capitalize on any of them, while firing nine shots, including four on target. The Cardinals also had some chances to add to its lead, hitting the crossbar in the 58th minute while Norenberg made two spectacular saves later in the match to keep the ‘Hawks within striking distance –- one on a rocket from distance that she tipped and hit the crossbar and another on a breakaway. Miami was unable to find the equalizer late, however, and dropped its second straight game.
The RedHawks ended with a 15-12 edge in shots, including 9-7 in shots on goal, despite the loss. Sophomore Katy Dolesh (South Euclid, Ohio) paced Miami with three shots. Miami also garnered nine corner kicks to BSU’s three but Buehler ended with seven saves to earn the win. Norenberg tied a career high with five stops in the loss, doing so for the fourth time this year.
Miami looks to rebound Sunday when it hosts defending co-MAC regular-season champion Toledo at 1 p.m. at Miami Soccer Field. Sunday will also be Senior Day, as Miami’s five seniors (Haley Clark, Courtney Clarke, Krysti Clarke, Sarah Dessfelt and Giselle Mangal) will be recognized prior to the match.