Ball State was on the attack for the majority of the cloud-covered afternoon but was unable to connect on its 17 looks at the goal. The Cardinals limited IUPUI to just six shots in the contest, but the Jaguars made good on their last one.
IUPUI midfielder Mackenzie Calvert wound up with a loose ball in the box in the 82nd minute and found a sliver of an opening near the right post to break the scoreless tie. The Cardinals had eight minutes left to find an equalizer but never managed another good chance at the goal.
"We created a lot of opportunities and just failed to score, and that cost us," Ball State coach Craig Roberts said. "When we get into the attacking third, we have to make sure we are finishing. If we can do that, then we'll be successful. I believe in the players we have. I know that we can do well and we have a bright future, but we cannot go through games where we have endless shots and don't convert."
Ball State (2-2-0), which lost Friday for the first time since its season opener, returns to action Sunday when it hosts IPFW at 1 p.m. at the Briner Sports Complex.
The Cardinals were so much in command during the first half Friday that they owned an 8-1 advantage in shots at halftime. The one shot the Jaguars (1-4-0) got off in the first 45 minutes was blocked near the top of the box and never threatened the goal.
Ball State continued to find scoring chances in the second half. Pavla Benyrova played a nice cross to Maimee Morris in the 50th minute that IUPUI goalkeeper Giselle Guzman came out of the goal to punch away. Brigit Reder's header off a corner kick 20 minutes later went just wide. And Skylar Chew had a one-on-one look against Guzman at the 74:45 mark that the Jaguar keeper saved.
Guzman was credited with four saves in the game, but she also came out from between the posts to play several other balls in front of the net.
"I think their keeper did well, but there was a lot of inconsistency on our service into the box today," Roberts said. "Usually we are pretty consistent about where we want to put the ball, and then we can time our runs at it. But there was inconsistency there, and we needed to be better in that area today."
The Cardinals finished the game with six corner kick opportunities compared to just two for IUPUI. Offensively for Ball State, Morris led all players in the game with four shots. No IUPUI player registered more than one shot on the day.