NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- On a windy and rainy Friday night, the Vanderbilt soccer team took on Indiana in their first game of the Music City Invitational. Both teams had a number of chances throughout the game but Indiana was the team to capitalize on their chance for the games lone-goal in the second half for a 1-0 win.
Following the match, head coach Darren Ambrose thought the team gave great effort but the inability to finish in the final third was the difference this evening.
"I am pleased with how we played, I can't fault our kids," said Ambrose. "I felt that for 70 of the 90 minutes we were really good but we are very young in front of goal. Other than Simone, there are mainly freshmen and sophomores up front and that was the difference."
In the first half, the Commodores dominated possession and it led to a lot of opportunities in their attacking third. In the first half alone, the Dores ended up taking seven corner kicks to Indiana's one. The offensive opportunities generated nine shots in the first half with five on net.
The best chance in the first half came in 25th minute when Lydia Simmons made an interception near midfield. She sent the ball up the left side to Madison Elwell who left it off for Simone Charley. Charley would end up giving it back to Elwell who would send a cross into the box. Jackie Welch would beat her defender and the goalie to the ball but her header went wide left of the net.
The Dores would get one more opportunity in the first half in the 36th minute when Leila Azari was taken down just outside the box. Lydia Simmons would take the free kick for the Dores in hopes of scoring the first goal of the game. She curled it around the Indiana defense but Bethany Kopel eyed it the whole way and made the save.
In the second half, Indiana settled in and was able to sustain more attacking opportunities as they gained possession.
Then in the 59th minute, the Hoosiers were able to capitalize in their offensive third. Following a throw-in, Mykayla Brown would settle the ball just inside the box on the left side and sent a cross towards goal. Chandra Davidson would make a move around her defender, get her head on the ball and sent it towards the near post for the goal.
The Commodores would look to respond quickly, as just three minutes later they would get a great scoring chance. Lydia Simmons would take possession about 25 yards out and sent in a cross to the far side where Hannon Eberts was streaking in past the defense. Eberts was able to get her head on it but sent the ball high of the net.
Over the final thirty minutes, the Commodores would substitute in a lot of forwards to try and push the play up field and get the goal to tie the game. Unfortunately for the Dores, the lack of finish did them in, as they were only able to get one shot on net in the second half. Kopel made six saves in net for the Hoosiers and claimed her second clean sheet of the season in the 1-0 win.
The Commodores did not dig deep into their bench Friday night, as they only had four substitutions come on against Indiana. The Dores didn't make their first sub until the 43rd minute and the youth was on full display. Seven of the starters were either freshmen or sophomores and all four subs on the night were also underclassmen.
The Dores will look to shake this loss off when they get back on the field Sunday afternoon. They will face Rhode Island at 2:30 pm CT to close out the Music City Invitational at the VU Soccer Complex.