MUNCIE, Ind. -- Skylar Chew scored with 35 seconds left in the second overtime period Friday to lift the Ball State soccer team to a dramatic, 1-0 Mid-American Conference victory over Bowling Green at the Briner Sports Complex.
The Cardinals pressured the Falcons all afternoon, registering 32 shots and putting 13 on goal, but Bowling Green goalkeeper Jenna Underwood was up to the task each time through the first 109 minutes of play. Underwood did her best to preserve a scoreless draw on the final play of the game, saving a header attempt from Chew before the Ball State senior snuck the rebound into the net with her left foot.
"Honestly, I don't think there was anything going through my mind except I have to put this in the goal," Chew said. "I've had a game decided like that in the opposite direction but never for us. I think we definitely deserved that."
With the victory, Ball State improved to 8-5-4 (5-2-2 MAC) and locked up one of the eight spots in the MAC Tournament. Bowling Green dropped to 1-15-1 (0-8-1 MAC). The Cardinals are now playing for seeding in the final two regular-season games. The top four teams in the final standings will host first-round tournament games.
The Cardinals welcome MAC West-leading Central Michigan to the Briner Sports Complex Sunday for a 1 p.m. game. It will be Senior Day for Ball State as the program honors 10 Cardinals who will be playing their final regular-season home game.
Friday against Bowling Green, Ball State controlled the entire game but really picked up its attack over the final 10 minutes of regulation and the overtime periods. The Cardinals fired 19 of their 32 shots during that stretch and had more than a few close calls in the cold and the rain.
Sarah Orisich had a shot hit the crossbar, and Jasmine Moses' follow sailed high in the 80th minute. Underwood thwarted a breakaway, one-on-one attempt by Nicole Pembleton in the first overtime. Orisich then had another shot sail just high with fewer than three minutes remaining in the second overtime.
But with the clock ticking down and the game headed for a scoreless draw, Chew broke through to put Ball State over the top. It was the second goal of the season for the senior defender who was pushing up late in the game to help the Cardinals' attack.
"It was definitely frustrating when we couldn't get one of our shots to go, but our team played so great, especially in the second half and the overtimes," Chew said. "We had chance after chance, but this game belonged to us and I just knew it was going to come, and it finally did."
Ball State's shutout of Bowling Green was the fourth shutout in the past five games for the Cardinals. Senior goalkeeper Aubrey Buehler, who made two saves in the game, recorded her fifth shutout of the season and her 12th in three years as a Cardinal.
Offensively, Pembleton logged a game-high six shots for Ball State, while Moses, Maggie Brown and Victoria Jacobs posted four shots each. Brown put three of her shots on goal and had another ball from the right side of the box deflect off the crossbar.
Kaitlyn Tobin led Bowling Green with five shots and Ashley Garr accounted for the other two of the Falcons' seven shots on the day.
Friday's game was televised by Ball State Sports Link, and the broadcast aired throughout the state on Comcast Indiana 81.