By Collin Bryant | Sports Writer
Baylor soccer improved to 4-0-1 on the year when it shutout Ball State 1-0 Sunday at Betty Lou Mays Field.
The Cardinals (2-3-1) were the most physical team the Lady Bears have encountered thus far in the season with 10 fouls spread between the two teams with more than 15 minutes left in the half.
The Bears dominated possession with nine shots on goal compared to the Cardinals’ zero. Baylor appeared to have at least one score in the bag when it got three shots consecutively on goal in a single possession.
However, Ball State senior goal keeper Alyssa Heintschel had something to say about it. Heintschel stopped not only that barrage of shots, but had four other saves for the Cardinals throughout the half holding the Bears at bay and keeping the game scoreless at halftime.
Coming out of the half, the Bears and Cardinals’ possessions were more balanced, as neither team managed a shot on goal in the first 15 minutes. The physical play continued as well, with seven more fouls occurring between both teams.
Midway through the second half, the Bears picked it up offensively getting two more shots on goal, but once again were denied by Heintschel. The Cardinals finally got a shot on goal 20 minutes in to the second half. However, the Bears continued to maintain the advantage in possession with 13 shots on goal.
Though Heintschel continued to play solidly, snagging one more save, junior forward Jackie Crowther finally broke the tie with 12 minutes left in the game.
Crowther scored unassisted after a defensive slip from Ball State’s junior midfielder Paula Guerrero, who missed the ball while attempting to clear it out of the box.
Freshman goalkeeper Jennifer Wandt had a save on goal two minutes out to keep the game in the Lady Bears’ hands.
Baylor head coach Paul Jobson said he was pleased with how his team dealt with Ball State’s physicality in the game and sees it being beneficial moving forward.
“What I loved about it was I don’t think we’ve been physical enough this year. I think what Ball State did it actually started to bring it out of us,” Jobson said. “So I’m hoping it kind of opens the lid on our aggressive play a little bit.”
Crowther said she felt very blessed with her opportunities, and knew the team was confident they would have the outcome it did.
“[I’m] very thankful for it, really just blessed to be able get an opportunity to get back in and help finish out the end of the game,” Crowther said. “I think that we were all pressing so hard, I mean we had what like 15 shots or something like that so we knew it was going to come we just didn’t know when.”
Baylor looks to continue its success as it hits the road for a weekend series with the University of Portland (2-3-1) at 9 p.m. Friday and the University of Washington (3-2-0) at 2 p.m. Sunday in Portland, Ore.