After Louisville lost to Notre Dame 1-0 Saturday night, I decided to check out some of the online message boards to see what people were saying about the game.
In between the seemingly endless posts about Louisville’s role in the conference realignment saga, I found a number of fans talking about the men’s soccer team. “Wow … looks like the Cards read too many of the press clippings … two losses already,” read one comment.
Expectations like that are not unexpected, to be honest. After making it to the national championship game the previous season, two losses in the first three weeks seem problematic.
Louisville coach Ken Lolla said earlier this season that this schedule was designed with a specific purpose in mind.
“We wanted to play a schedule that would challenge us and allow us to get better,” he said.
The Cards have four games against nationally-ranked opponents in the non-conference slate alone. Throw in the rigors of the Big East, and eight of their 17 regular season games are against teams that have been ranked at some point this season.
The Cardinals struggled in the first half at Notre Dame. The Fighting Irish controlled possession and tested Cards’ goalkeeper Andre Boudreaux early on, requiring him to make four saves in the first half alone. Despite jumping out in front fewer than four minutes in, Notre Dame could not capitalize again, taking a 1-0 lead into halftime.
Louisville came out in the second half rejuvenated, controlling the tempo and possession for much of the period. After being outshot seven to four in the first half, the Cards rattled off 16 shots in the second to just two for Notre Dame. Unfortunately, none of them connected.
Louisville now gets a chance to regroup by hosting No. 2 Connecticut at 7 p.m. Oct. 1.
Category: U of L Soccer Report