Sports

After loss to Cincinnati, O’Connor wants more players to ‘take responsibility’ next season

The Owls closed out the season with a 2-1 loss on the road against Cincinnati on Sunday.

Temple finished out the season with a 2-1 road loss to Cincinnati on Sunday.

It’s the first time in Temple’s (3-16, 0-9 American Athletic Conference) history the team has finished with less than four wins.  

Coach Seamus O’Connor said despite finishing with a losing record, he’s proud of his team’s effort this season.

“I’m embarrassed we didn’t represent the university better, but I’m not embarrassed by these young ladies,” O’Connor said. “I’m incredibly proud of them… Like I said we’re going have to build them back up again because they’re good kids and they feel bad about this season, they’re very embarrassed about this season. We just gotta use it as fuel for the offseason to work hard.”

Junior forward Gabriella McKeown notched her fourth goal of the season at the 69 minute, 19 second mark, but it wasn’t enough to spark a comeback. She led the team in goals this season, but hadn’t scored since the Owls’ game against Rider University on Sept. 1.

The Owls went down 2-0 early in the first 10 minutes of the game after goals by Bearcats’ freshman midfielder Alex Stubblebine and junior defender Vanessa Gilles.

“They came out ready to play and we just didn’t match the intensity of the first five minutes,” redshirt-junior forward Kayla Cunningham said.

Sophomore goalkeeper Jordan Nash finished the season with 120 saves, including nine against the Bearcats. Her 120 saves and 82.2 save percentage both are fifth-best in a single season in Temple history.

Four players accounted for 10 of the Owls’ 14 goals this season.

“That’s the big thing in the offseason is just having more girls take responsibility,” O’Connor said. “We can’t just expect our captains are going to do everything and everything is going to be alright. Everybody’s got to buy in every single day and hold each other accountable.”

Tom Ignudo can be reached at thomas.ignudo@temple.edu or on Twitter @Ignudo5.

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