Drake Suffers 1-0 Setback At Evansville In MVC Opener
“This was an exciting, yet disappointing game today,” Bulldog head coach Lindsey Horner commented. “This was the best we have played, yet we didn't put their keeper under enough pressure to earn a result. We had more than a handful of excellent chances hit the crossbar, go over, or go wide when we could have and should have had them on frame.”
Drake controlled the tempo of the first half registering an 8-3 advantage in shots, but it was the Purple Aces’ lone shot on goal that gave Evansville a 1-0 lead at the intermission.
The pace picked up in the second half as the Purples Aces bettered the Bulldogs in shots, 11-10.
Senior Brittany Schuling (Bondurant, Iowa/Bondurant-Farrar) came within inches of registering the equalizer for Drake in the early moments of the second half as she twice hit the crossbar with shots in the 54th (53:28) and 55th (54:56) minutes, respectively.
The Bulldogs were not able to capitalize with a goal down the stretch as Drake’s modest two-game winning streak was snapped.
“There was one letdown today in which an outside back got open and hit a great strike from distance for their goal, other than that instance we were all over them," Horner explained. “Our back four and our keeper were very good as a unit. Our center midfielders were workers and playmakers for us and our front runners caused all sorts of problems, but have to find the back of the net.”
The Bulldogs edged Evansville in shots in the tilt, 18-14, although the Purple Aces posted a 5-3 margin in shots on goal.
Junior Ashlie Stokes (Sioux City, Iowa/Sioux City North) led Drake with a game-high six shots, while freshman Rebecca Rodgers (Peotone, Ill./Peotone) added four. Directing Evansville with three shots each were Kayla Smith and Lauren Tiernan.
Junior goalkeeper Andrea Swanson (Clive, Iowa/Valley) collected a game-high four saves for the Bulldogs. Her counterpart, Simone Busby, made three saves for the Purple Aces to earn the shutout.
“I think this could be a game we look back on and know we could have come home with a point, but in terms of MVC games we have to take care of business at Cownie,” said Horner. “We have the opportunity in the next three games to have some success at home. We have some time before UNI to get to full strength and let some injuries heal. Our next game will be challenging, but we still have our best soccer in front of us.”
Drake returns to action on Sunday (Oct. 6) with a 1:00 p.m. in-state showdown with Iowa State at the Cownie Soccer Complex.