(image via TexasSports.com)
AUSTIN, Texas – On a long Thursday night at Mike A. Myers Stadium that saw lightning in the local area force a two-hour weather delay prior to pre-match warm-ups, Texas Soccer (2-2-2) and Oregon State (4-0-2) battled over 110 tough minutes before settling for a 1-1 (2OT) tie.
For the Longhorns, senior midfielder Lindsey Meyer tallied her first goal of the campaign on a penalty kick at the 18:22 mark to grant UT the lead. OSU would respond with just three seconds remaining in the first half, however, as forward Helene Haavik broke in 1-v-1 against Texas keeper Abby Smith and scored from eight yards out to even the score.
Redshirt freshman forward Mikayla Flores led the Horns in shots with four, while Smith was forced to make five stops in extending her Big 12 Conference-leading save total to 38.
Oregon State out-shot Texas for the match by a 16-13 count and 6-4 in shots on frame, while UT held a 6-2 advantage on corner kicks.
"I'm really just disappointed with how we closed out the first half," Texas head coach Angela Kelly said. "We unplugged, and it's unacceptable to give up a goal in the last five seconds of the half. The team knows that, and there are no excuses for that. Lindsey Meyer just can't give any more. We've been getting solid performances out of the majority of the squad. Overall, the players are progressing and giving us everything physically and emotionally that they possibly can."
The Beavers registered the first shot of the contest 6:14 in as a cross from the right wing found the feet of forward Mariah Roggow. Her effort from out front was blocked by the UT defense, however, and cleared away from danger.
Texas barely missed taking an early lead just 30 seconds later as a ball played ahead by senior forward Kelsey Shimmick dropped in front of Flores. The La Verne, Calif., native beat her marker to the ball and fired a shot from a tough angle on the left wing that trickled just wide of the right post.
With the match moving briskly back-and-forth across the pitch, it was the Longhorns that would break in front first. With a crowd battling inside the middle of the 18 in OSU's defensive end, a foul called within the scrum set UT up with its first penalty kick of the season. Meyer calmly stepped to the spot and deposited her first goal of the campaign into the lower left corner for a 1-0 lead.
Searching for a quick equalizer, Oregon State immediately began to pressure UT's end with a blocked Roggow shot. During the 31st minute, a quick counter from the Beavers resulted in a shot by midfielder Sabrina Santarossa that was saved on a leaping grab by Smith.
Action really ramped up towards the conclusion of the half as OSU registered two terrific scoring opportunities. The first came with 48 seconds remaining as OSU's Allison Pantuso ran onto a deflected ball inside the 18. She raced in 1-v-1 against Smith and fired, but UT's net minder made a terrific stop with her outstretched left leg before the ball was cleared.
Unfortunately for the Longhorns, another 1-v-1 situation with just three seconds left resulted in Oregon State tying the match. A long through ball up the middle from Kayla Latham found Haavik behind the backline all alone. She dribbled in on Smith and fired past the diving keeper to send the teams to the break knotted at one.
Neither team was able to put a shot on target again until the 71:12 mark when Flores nearly pushed the Horns in front. On a ball played up the left wing, Flores beat her marker and fired from 12 yards, but the ball ricocheted off the left upright.
With just 9:48 left in regulation, Texas again had a golden chance to take the lead. Off a Smith goal kick, the ball was passed from Meyer to senior midfielder Chantale Campbell to the feet of freshman forward Alexa Adams. The Lancaster, Calif., native rolled in 1-v-1 against OSU keeper Bella Geist, but with the net minder cutting down the angle, Adams' shot from the left side just trickled past the right post.
Oregon State managed the only two shots during the first overtime session as drives from Jenna Baxter and Haavik were blocked and high, respectively.
With just 10 minutes left to find the elusive "golden goal" in the second overtime, each squad managed one solid chance.
At 103:12, Flores shot a ball from the left wing that took a deflection before being stopped by Geist near the left upright.
Roggow nearly ended it at 104:00 for the Beavers, but her 1-v-1 effort was stopped at the last second by a on-rushing Smith to effectively seal the tie.
Texas Post-Match Quotes
Texas head coach Angela Kelly
On her team's effort against OSU: "I'm really just disappointed with how we closed out the first half. We unplugged, and it's unacceptable to give up a goal in the last five seconds of the half. The team knows that, and there are no excuses for that. Lindsey Meyer just can't give any more. We've been getting solid performances out of the majority of the squad. Overall, the players are progressing and giving us everything physically and emotionally that they possibly can."
Senior defender Brinkley Field
On giving up the late first half goal: "We weren't as focused as we should have been (at the end of the half), but it was a learning experience, and it'll never happen again."
On what Smith said to her teammates after the OSU goal was scored: "Abby just said some words to get our mind right and focus so we could come back blazing in the second half and just kind of like, be refocused to come out like fire out of a cannon. I think the defense did well tonight. I think we pressured and covered, and we kept the forwards under control. I think we did well overall."
Redshirt freshman forward Mikayla Flores
On coming back from the late first half goal: "It's kind of unacceptable to lose focus in the last few seconds of the half. But [coach Kelly] pumped us back up and told us we have to compete, we have to win, we have to put the ball in the back of the net. Unfortunately that didn't happen, but it'll happen over time. We'll get our chances again, but it's definitely something we need to focus on.
"[Coach Kelly] was just more disappointed because we were up 1-0 at the end of the half, but she had confidence in us coming back into the second half. Unfortunately, we just couldn't put it in the back of the net.
"We had our opportunities, we couldn't put it away, but we have to come back Sunday with a whole new mentality… Put the ball in the back of the net and finish our opportunities.
"We created awesome opportunities for ourselves. We couldn't get on the end of it, but I think we are definitely heading towards a positive direction."