Owls shutout by Mustangs for fifth straight loss

Temple University men’s soccer was unable to mount consistent offense as they fell to Southern Methodist University 1-0 on Sunday night.

Liam Cummings, sophomore goalkeeper, runs to block a ball during an Owls' game against Southern Methodist University at Temple Sports Complex on Sept. 18. | NICK DAVIS / THE TEMPLE NEWS

In the 66th minute, Mustangs’ senior midfielder Gabriel Costa capitalized on a one-on-one with Owls’ sophomore goalkeeper Liam Cummings to give the Mustangs a 1-0 advantage. 

Temple University men’s soccer (1-5-2, 0-4 The American Athletic Conference) lost to  Southern Methodist University (6-1-2, 3-1 The American) 1-0  at Washburn Stadium in Dallas, Texas on Sunday night. 

Despite the loss, Temple head coach Brian Rowland was proud of the team’s effort against the Mustangs, he said

“Defensively we were sound,” Rowland added. “We had a plan in place and executed it well.  We limited them to very few quality chances.”

On the offensive side, the Owls manufactured just five shots overall, and only one reached Mustangs’ sophomore goalkeeper Cole Johnson. 

The Owls are last in the conference in many offensive categories, including shots, goals and points this season. 

“I think with the group that has tried to secure up the defensive side it has been difficult to commit numbers forward,” Rowland said. “Obviously we have a lot of options up top but you can only play so many, we have got to find the combinations that work.”

Temple has now lost five consecutive games for the first time since 2014, when the Owls lost a program-worst seven straight games. This includes losing their first four matchups in conference play this season. 

Despite the rough stretch, Rowland believes the team took a step forward mentally against the Mustangs, he said.

Cummings finished the game with five saves, only allowing one goal. This is the best performance the sophomore goalkeeper has put out this season, with the fewest allowed goals since he was named the starter on Sept. 18. 

“I think that he is improving game by game,” Rowland said. “I thought defensively as a group we were in a better place. Liam’s improving, obviously there’s still room for him to grow but they asked a lot of questions on set pieces for a keeper that played as much.”

Temple will take on Princeton University (4-4, 1-0 The Ivy League) in its next game at the Temple Sports Complex on Oct. 6 at 7 p.m.

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