The Hurricanes fell to Louisville 1-0 in a tough ACC battle at Lynn Stadium Thursday night.
Miami (3-6-0, 0-2-0) won three of its last four matches entering the contest against the Cardinals, but have now dropped the first two in-conference games of the regular season. The Canes were also shut out by Wake Forest in a 3-0 loss in Winston-Salem, North Carolina last Friday.
Louisville (4-4-1, 1-1-0) scored what turned out to be the game-winner in the 26th minute on a beautiful shot by forward Alison Price from the top of the penalty box. After receiving a touch pass from Casey Whitfield, Price nailed a curler with her left foot into the top right corner of the net.
Miami’s best chance came in the 10th minute off a free kick 25-yards out by senior Natalie Moik. Moik powered the ball over Louisville’s wall of defenders, but goalkeeper Taylor Bucklin saved the low shot searching for the left corner of the net. Bucklin, a transfer from Michigan, made four saves in the first half.
The Canes focused on attacking down the right sideline, but were unable to do anything with several crosses into the box. Freshman defender Maisie Baker and junior Gianna Dal Pozzo prevented multiple dangerous chances by clearing deep passes before a Cardinal could get to the ball.
Although Miami out-shot Louisville seven to four in the first 45 minutes, the Canes only attempted one shot in the final 18 minutes of the half.
Louisville nearly went up 2-0 early in the second half, but redshirt freshman goalkeeper Phallon Tullis-Joyce made a fantastic save in the 48th minute on a line drive shot by forward Isabella Habuda from inside the box.
The Cardinals ramped up the defensive pressure in the second half. Miami struggled to penetrate the stout Louisville defense until the 75th minute when the Canes had two great chances near the net that brought Bucklin far off her line.
Bucklin made a diving save on a shot by sophomore forward Ronnie Johnson only to see the ball land just out of the reach of sophomore Grace Rapp, who was gearing up for the rebound. One minute later, Bucklin charged off her spot to break up a deep ball for Johnson.
Miami had two free kicks inside of 25 yards in the final eight minutes of the game, but both shots failed to find the back of the net. Moik’s attempt in the 82nd minute went wide left while Bucklin dove to her right to save Rapp’s shot in the 89th minute.
The Hurricanes finished with 18 shots compared to just seven for the Cardinals and had 11 corner kicks on the night.
The Canes face No. 7 Clemson at 1 p.m. Sunday at Cobb Stadium.