The women’s soccer team opened their final weekend of the season with a 3-0 shutout loss against visiting Fordham on Friday, Oct. 26.
The loss on Friday eliminates Temple from a chance to play in the Atlantic 10 tournament this season, a goal that many of the Owls had entering the 2012 season.
“The inability to finish when we were on the front foot in the first half, some defensive lapses, and some individual mistakes,” coach Matt Gwilliam said. “It’s everything that has plagued us the entire year.”
Early in the first half, the Owls controlled much of the offensive flow of the match, as the Fordham defense was struggling to gain control of the ball. What ultimately doomed the Owls was their inability to finish while they had the offensive control, senior midfielder Jourdan Brill said.
At the end of the first half, the two teams were scoreless, but it was the Fordham offense that came out of the gate quickly in the second half.
Fordham senior forward Annie Worden notched the first goal of the match less than two minutes into the second half, as the 46th minute goal gave the Rams the 1-0 lead.
In the 69th minute, it was Worden who struck once again off a header assisted by sophomore forward Kate McDonnell. The goal was Worden’s second of the and gave the Rams the 2-0 lead.
Just under four minutes later in the 73rd minute, McDonnell scored the third goal of the match for the Rams, assisted by freshman midfielder Ivana Lahcanski, giving Fordham a 3-0 lead that would hold up for the remainder of the match.
“I think we played really, really well in the first half,” senior midfielder Kate Yurkovic. “It’s the end of the season and everyone is getting tired. We had some individual mistakes, some team mistakes, and we got caught watching the ball a lot.”
In goal for the Owls was senior goalkeeper Tara Murphy, who tied a season high with 12 saves on 28 shots, 16 of which were shots on goal, while allowing three goals against Fordham.
“I thought this was one of the best games where we have been working the ball on the ground,” Brill said. “I really felt like we were the better team. It was just individual mistakes and [Fordham] punished us for it.”
Down 3-0 to Fordham, coach Gwilliam said he was glad to see his girls still fighting and competing until the final whistle.
“We compete all the time, Gwilliam added. “We always have. In this whole year for me, not one kid has given up,”
With the loss, the Owls fall to 5-12-2 on the season (2-6-0 in A-10), while the Rams improve to 8-10-0 (4-4-0 in A-10). The shutout against Fordham was also the tenth time the Owls have been shutout in 2012.
The next match for Temple will be on Sunday, Oct. 28, as the Owls take on La Salle on Senior Day at the Ambler Sports Complex.
John Murrow can be reached at email@example.com or by twitter @johnmurrow12