“Central Arkansas came in and did what it had to do,” said Lipscomb coach Jon Ireland. “They got the first goal and we fought back. We were able to get that first goal back.
“We gave up too many cheap corner kicks late in the game. And we didn’t mark a player right in front of our goal. It’s frustrating to give up a cheap goal with less than three minutes left.”
Central Arkansas opened the scoring at 14:52 of the first half. Cori Kaplinger passed the ball to Elizabeth Brady who put the ball in the top of the goal.
Lipscomb's Kirsten Heikkinen, making the move from defender to center midfielder, tied the game at 39:15 of the first half. She scored unassisted from 15 yards out into the top right corner of the goal. It was her first collegiate goal in two seasons.
“Kirsten had a great shot,” said Ireland. “It was one of the better goals we have had in a long time. She played very well for us. She had a lot of energy.”
Heikkinen, Danielle Bethke and Kate Spellman each had two shots.
With 2:58 left to play in regulation Kaplinger scored from three yards out, putting the ball into the left corner of the goal. Allyson Campbell assisted on the play.
The Lady Bisons fell to 2-4. Central Arkansas is 4-3.
‘We actually had a great practice Saturday and we looked very sharp,” said Ireland. “It was frustrating the way we came out in the game.
“There were times when we did really well. We possessed the ball really well in terms of our passing. But the bottom line is you can do all of that and the only thing that matters is the score.”
But Ireland knows his team has a lot of work to do with only two non-conference games remaining before starting Atlantic Sun play.
“We had too many breakdowns offensively and defensively,” said Ireland. “You can talk about all of the freshmen we have and all of the youth.
“But at the end of the day that doesn’t matter. A few of them have to step up and that is not happening. We can only do so much as coaches.”
In the second half Ireland was starting four freshmen on the defensive back line _ Courtney Williams, Kameron Stillwell, Ashley Duggins and Katie Wood.
The Lady Bisons attempted 10 shots while holding Central Arkansas to six.
Central Arkansas goalkeeper Kirby Huffstickler made five saves. Erin Zerio, who started for the Lady Bisons, and Ally Marler, who played the second half each made one save and gave up one goal.
“Our players have to step up and finish their opportunities,” said Ireland. “Once again we had some great chances to score, but we don’t have any composure around the goal.
“We are getting some good looks. It’s not that we aren’t creating chances, but when we get the chance we just panic. We win the midfield. We are very good at possession. We knock it around. We make good runs. But we struggle to finish in the offensive third.”
The Lady Bisons are on the road Friday at 3 to face Ball State.
“We have to regroup,” said Ireland. “We have a lot of things to correct and we have to do it quickly.”