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After loss to Purdue, Indiana women’s soccer awaits postseason fate

A series of two goals in seven minutes hurt Indiana in a 2-0 loss to the arch-rival Purdue Boilermakers. The Hoosiers did not qualify for the Big Ten tournament that will kick off this Thursday, which will feature eight teams from the conference. Nonetheless, head coach Erwin van Bennekom and company will wait to see if they qualify for the NCAA tournament, which was the main goal discussed at the beginning of the year

Indiana and Purdue traded shots on goal to start things off. As expected in a rivalry game, the game started out very physical, as there were four fouls in the first eight minutes. Sarah Griffith gave the Hoosiers problems defensively, as she constantly found ways to get to the Indiana side of the field and get shots on goal.

However, as the game went on, Indiana was not bothered by Purdue’s early firepower and began to settle into the game. Alaina Kalin got two shots up in less than two minutes to revive a dormant Hoosier offense as well as helping to set up her teammates. The two teams went into the locker room all tied up at zero, as Indiana did a good job hanging in there with the No. 18 team in the country. 

Things continued to get more aggressive to start out the second half, as Kalin along with Purdue’s Skylurr Patrick were both handed out yellow cards within the first five minutes of the half. After a quiet first half, the offenses really started to pick it up in the second half, as there were five shots on goal within the first 15 minutes of the second half.

Disaster struck for Indiana toward the end of the game. The Boilermakers put in two goals within the span of seven minutes to kill all of the offensive momentum that Indiana had going before the goals. A yellow card for Jen Blitchok in the 80th minute was an unfortunate end to what was a great regular season for the Hoosiers, as they fell to Purdue 2-0 in what could be the team’s final game.

Indiana finishes 9-5-4 for the regular season. The team will wait to see its next challenge, as the selection for the NCAA tournament will be approaching soon. However, van Bennekom’s team has shown that the future is bright for Indiana women’s soccer with the young talent playing well on the big stages.

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