In another defensive battle, the women’s soccer team lost its second straight Atlantic 10 Conference match 1-0 to the St. Bonaventure Bonnies in Olean, N.Y. today.
Deep into the second period of the conference matchup, Bonnies’ freshman forward Alyssa Lapp scored on a header for the game’s lone goal.
After being benched earlier in the season, Owls’ redshirt senior goalkeeper Tara Murphy made her third consecutive start. Murphy made two saves before being pulled from the game in the 61st minute for a red card.
After the first half, both squads were still scoreless. Murphy possessed the sole save, in the half, with the defense limiting the Bonnies to seven shots.
“We have to keep limiting other team’s chances, which we’ve done a good job of,” coach Matt Gwilliam said.
Minutes into the second period, with both teams still scoreless, Murphy was ejected. With Murphy gone, true freshman, Shauni Kerkhoff, was once again back in the lineup as the Owls’ goalkeeper.
Even with the sudden change of goalkeepers, Temple’s defense continued to hold, until the 86th minute when Lapp scored her first career goal, with the assist from fellow freshman forward Maureen Madden.
“We just left our marks and they got up across for a free header, and it went in” Gwilliam said.
Fridays’ A-10 conference match marks the eighth straight Owls’ match that was decided by one point or less.
“We defended well, but we made a mistake to today and got punished,” Gwilliam said. “The last two games, it was the same thing.”
Regardless of which goalie has played, the Owls’ defense has kept recent matches close, but the inability to score has cost them.
During this eight-game stretch, Temple’s defense has allowed five goals, but has only mustered two of their own. Against Bonaventure, the Owls were outshot 14 to seven.
“We have to score goals. It’s pretty simple,” Gwilliam said. We create chances, but we can’t score.”
With back-to-back conference losses, the Owls play their ninth A-10 match on Sunday at Duquesne at 1 p.m.
“We just need to straighten out some things, need to grind and take our chances.”
Brien Edwards can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @BErick1123.