LOUISVILLE - Sarah Mueller had a career day for the Miami University field hockey team on Sunday with 14 saves, but it was not enough as the RedHawks fell to 23rd-ranked Louisville, 3-1, to conclude the Sherrill Brakmeier Classic. Miami is now 0-2 on the season, while the Cardinals improve to 1-1.
Mueller had to hold strong during the first half as Louisville peppered her with 10 shots on goal during the frame. That included the Cardinals also being awarded four penalty corners in the first half. Despite that, Mueller made nine saves, allowing only a goal to Erin Schneidtmiller in the 10th minute.
"We gave away the opportunity of the first 35 minutes," said head coach Iñako Puzo. "Good goalkeeping kept us in the game. When we did step up and penetrate the 25 we didn't take advantage of the chances we gave ourselves."
Louisville made it 2-0 with a goal a little over a minute into the second half. Miami got a little more aggressive from there, beginning to move play into the Cardinals' defensive zone. That work paid off in the 60th minute when the RedHawks were awarded a penalty corner. In the midst of the play, Jordan Long would take the ball on the right side of the circle and find Emily Gruesser to the left of the cage. Gruesser would strike the ball into the left part of the cage during the 61st minute for her first goal of the season to put Miami on the board.
Louisville would answer a little over a minute later with an insurance goal as Haley Jurich made it 3-1 off a rebound of a Mueller save. The RedHawks would get one final chance on a penalty corner, but an Olivia Miller shot was blocked and a Gruesser shot was saved.
The Cardinals outshot Miami, 20-6, for the contest. They also had a 6-2 advantage in penalty corners. Gruesser led the RedHawks with three shots on goal, while Bea Dechant had a defensive save for the second straight game.
"We can learn from this game and expect more from ourselves," said Puzo.
Miami returns to action next weekend when it heads to East Lansing, Mich. for a pair of contests. The RedHawks will take on their third straight ranked opponent when they face 11th-ranked Stanford on Saturday, Sept. 1 at 4 p.m. Miami will then play host Michigan State on Sunday, Sept. 2 at 4 p.m.